Tag Archives: brothers and sisters

Whoever Has the Son Has Life…

12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have God’s Son does not have life. ~ 1 John 5:12  NLT ~

Image Credit: Whoever has the Son has eternal life.
Image Credit:
Whoever has the Son has eternal life.

What a powerful scripture! “Whoever has the Son has life…”

When we’re drowning in sorrow, as long as the Son of God dwells within us, we have life.

When pain overtakes our body, we still live, despite the affliction, because Christ lives within us.

No matter what we endure for His name’s sake, we still have life, as long as He remains within our hearts.

And though our world crumbles and falls, even still, we live in His name.

Yes, although we walk through the valley of the shadow of death, we are assured that though we die, yet, we shall live, when the Son of God is our Lord and Savior.

Image Credit: Nevada Pain
Image Credit:
Nevada Pain

I live with chronic back pain that keeps worsening with the passage of time. It often renders me unable to do the simplest daily activities, things that you never even think about, until you can no longer do them for yourself. I now require help to do things such as…

  • Bathing myself…
    • Dressing myself…
      • Cooking…
        • Cleaning…
          • Handicap Parking…
            • Walking (I must use a cane)…
              • Shopping (I must use a scooter)…
                • Playing with my grandchildren…

My husband now carries the load of cooking, cleaning and caring for me, and while I am so thankful for this good man, I also worry that I’ve become a burden to him. When I express this concern to him, he asks me if I thought he was a burden, whenever he’s been sick and unable to do anything, and my answer is, “No, of course not. I love you.”

He then smiles at me, and replies, “I love you too,” and I know this is true. I don’t understand how or why, but I am so grateful to my God and Savior, who knew me before I was conceived in my mother’s womb, and chose me to be His. I am thankful, because He knew, long before He placed me in my mother’s womb, that I would one day suffer with chronic back pain, and He had a plan to help me endure it. For three years before I was born, He had created a little boy, who would one day grow up to be my husband. So, knowing the love and patience that would be required to help me endure, He gifted my husband with love, joy, patience, gentleness and kindness…

Image Credit: Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson
Image Credit:
Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson

I wish I could tell you that I’ve accepted my circumstances graciously, but that would be a lie. My faith has been attacked from every side, and there have been many times when I’ve given up. I’ve discovered that it’s much easier to believe that God will answer my prayers for others, than it is to believe that He will answer my prayers for myself. Therefore, like the father of the boy with the murderous deaf-mute spirit that tried to kill him, by throwing him into the fire or water, while his body was overcome with convulsions, I find myself uttering his same desperate cry to Jesus…

20 So they brought the boy. But when the evil spirit saw Jesus, it threw the child into a violent convulsion, and he fell to the ground, writhing and foaming at the mouth.

21 “How long has this been happening?” Jesus asked the boy’s father.

He replied, “Since he was a little boy. 22 The spirit often throws him into the fire or into water, trying to kill him. Have mercy on us and help us, if You can.”

 23 “What do you mean, ‘If I can’?” Jesus asked. “Anything is possible if a person believes.”

24 The father instantly cried out, “I do believe, but help me overcome my unbelief!”

25 When Jesus saw that the crowd of onlookers was growing, He rebuked the evil spirit. “Listen, you spirit that makes this boy unable to hear and speak,” He said. “I command you to come out of this child and never enter him again!”

26 Then the spirit screamed and threw the boy into another violent convulsion and left him. The boy appeared to be dead. A murmur ran through the crowd as people said, “He’s dead.” 27 But Jesus took him by the hand and helped him to his feet, and he stood up.

28 Afterward, when Jesus was alone in the house with His disciples, they asked Him, “Why couldn’t we cast out that evil spirit?”

29 Jesus replied, “This kind can be cast out only by prayer.” ~ Mark 9:20-29  NLT ~

Like this boy’s father, I desperately want to believe that Jesus will heal me, but what if that isn’t His will? What if His will is for me to endure this pain for reasons I don’t know? Oh, I know that many churches tell us that it is not God’s will for His people to suffer, but how do they explain the suffering endured by every one of the great heroes of faith?

  • Abel was murdered by his own brother because he offered a more acceptable gift to God than his brother…
    • Joseph suffered unjustly, betrayed by his brothers and sold as a slave. Then he became a prisoner in a country far from his home…
      • David, a man after God’s own heart, suffered greatly, chased by the murderous King Saul, losing his and Bathsheba’s first child to death, and later, betrayed by one of his own sons…
        • Jeremiah was known as the weeping prophet, for he suffered greatly for the Kingdom of God.
          • Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego were thrown in a fiery furnace…
            • Daniel was thrown in a den of lions...
          • 13 All these people died still believing what God had promised them. They did not receive what was promised, but they saw it all from a distance and welcomed it. They agreed that they were foreigners and nomads here on earth. 14 Obviously people who say such things are looking forward to a country they can call their own. 15 If they had longed for the country they came from, they could have gone back. 16 But they were looking for a better place, a heavenly homeland. That is why God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.  ~ Hebrews 11:13-16  NLT ~
        • 35 Women received their loved ones back again from death.

But others were tortured, refusing to turn from God in order to be set free. They placed their hope in a better life after the resurrection.

36 Some were jeered at, and their backs were cut open with whips. Others were chained in prisons. 37 Some died by stoning, some were sawed in half, and others were killed with the sword. Some went about wearing skins of sheep and goats, destitute and oppressed and mistreated. 38 They were too good for this world, wandering over deserts and mountains, hiding in caves and holes in the ground.

39 All these people earned a good reputation because of their faith, yet none of them received all that God had promised. 40 For God had something better in mind for us, so that they would not reach perfection without us. ~ Hebrews 11:35-40  NLT ~

Now, many might argue that these are all Old Testament examples, and that we are living under the New Covenant, not the Law, and that is true. However, let us not forget that God is the same today, yesterday and forever…

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. ~ Hebrews 13:8  NLT ~

17 Whatever is good and perfect is a gift coming down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.  ~ James 1:17  NLT ~

“I am the Lord, and I do not change. That is why you descendants of Jacob are not already destroyed.  ~ Malachi 3:6  NLT ~

While it is true that the examples above are Old Testament references, it is also true that God is the same yesterday, today and forever. Not only did Old Testament men and women of God suffer for His name’s sake; New Testament men and women of God suffered as well…

And, because God is the same yesterday, today and forever, let us not forget that Old Testament and New Testament Christians weren’t the only ones to suffer…

  • Joni Eareckson Tada, a wonderful woman of God, with a powerful ministry, was in a terrible diving accident as a teen, and though she prayed for healing, it was God’s will for her to remain a quadriplegic, while still ministering for His glory.
    • Dave Roever, a godly man who served his country faithfully in the unpopular Vietnam war, was badly wounded by a hand grenade that exploded in his hand. Though his face was badly disfigured, he still gave glory to God, and ministered throughout the United States as an evangelist, then eventually returned to Vietnam as a missionary, at the Lord’s leading.
      • Patsy Clairmont, another woman of God, suffered for many years as an agoraphobic (fear of open places and crowds), before becoming an author and minister for the Lord.
        • Fanny Crosby, author of more than 8,000 hymns, loved the Lord and served Him faithfully, though she remained blind her entire life. And, rather than lamenting her circumstances, she once said, “Mother, if I had a choice, I would still choose to remain blind… for when I die; the first face I will ever see will be the face of my blessed Saviour.”

Therefore, despite the things I’ve been taught, when I examine the scriptures and the history of the church, I have come to realize that it isn’t God’s will for His people to remain trouble free, no matter what we’ve been told. In fact, it seems to me that it is in the dark times of suffering, in our weaknesses that God’s strength is revealed. In fact, even the apostle Paul asked God to remove his suffering…

Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. Each time He said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 10 That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong. ~ 2 Corinthians 12:8-10  NLT ~

As I study the word of God, concerning suffering, I am beginning to understand that those who have claimed that my suffering is God’s punishment against me, are absolutely wrong, and it is they who do not understand what God’s word truly says about suffering…

And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. ~ Romans 5:3-5  NKJV ~

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing. ~ James 1:2-4  NLT ~

18 Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory He will reveal to us later. ~ Romans 8:18  NLT ~

16 That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. 17 For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! 18 So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever. ~ 2 Corinthians 4:16-18  NLT ~

As I read the Word of the Lord, my faith is being renewed and restored. For too long, I’ve allowed the false teachings and the opinions of others to weigh me down, filling me with fear and doubt, which only magnifies the physical pain I must endure. As I write these words and share the words the Lord has given me, I believe that God will use them to strengthen and encourage others who are suffering as well. 

Beloved readers, don’t allow false teaching and man’s opinions to influence you. If someone tells you that it isn’t God’s will for you to suffer, or if they blame your circumstances on your lack of faith, don’t allow those words to fill you with shame. If someone tells you that your suffering is a punishment from God, or an attack from the devil, don’t allow those words to influence you.

Instead, 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and He will give you everything you need. (Matthew 6:33 NLTBeloved readers, don’t assume that your suffering is a punishment from God or an attack from the devil. And don’t assume that your suffering is not a part of God’s will for your life, because nothing happens by chance, and if you are truly a child of God, and you are living in obedience to Him, then He will keep you in His will. In fact, don’t even waste your time asking why you are suffering. Instead, remember these words that Jesus spoke to His disciples…

33  “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in Me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” ~ John 16:33  NLT ~

Finally, beloved readers, no matter what you are suffering, the most important thing for you to cling to is your relationship with Jesus. Have you been born again? If so, then whatever your circumstances are, no matter how much pain and suffering you endure, no matter how oppressed and depressed you are or have been, rejoice, because you have life!

25 Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in Me will live, even after dying.” ~ John 11:25  NLT ~

12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have God’s Son does not have life.  ~ 1 John 5:12  NLT ~

In closing, I would like to share this final word with those people who are suffering and have never been born again. If you have read this post all the way to the end, rejoice, because God has not given up on you, and He can turn your suffering into a reason to rejoice, as well. It is not by chance that you found this post and read it; it is because God has led you here so that you can be born again and live.

In order to accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you don’t have to pray a “Sinner’s Prayer.” You just need to  believe and do what the following scriptures say…

23 For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.  ~ Romans 3:23  NLT ~

According to this scripture, everyone has sinned against God, (except for Jesus, who was the Son of God and completely without sin). This means that every man, woman, boy and girl has sinned. It means that you have sinned, and I have sinned too. It means that even preachers and prophets have sinned. The scripture tells us that everyone has failed to meet the standard that God has set for us. This means that just as the worst criminal has fallen short of God’s glorious standard, we, too, have fallen short of His glorious standard. Do you believe this?

23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.  ~ Romans 6:23  NLT ~

According to God’s Law, the penalty for sinning and falling short of His glorious standard is death. As you can plainly see, there is no differential for how big or how small the sin is. It simply says that the payment or wages for sin is death. It sounds pretty hopeless, doesn’t it? But God had a rescue plan for us…

16 “For this is how God loved the world: He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 God sent His Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through Him.

18 “There is no judgment against anyone who believes in Him. But anyone who does not believe in Him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son. 19 And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. 20 All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. 21 But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants.  ~ John 3:16-21  NLT ~

Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through Me.”  ~ John 14:6  NLT ~

27 Everyone must die once, and after that be judged by God. 28 In the same manner Christ also was offered in sacrifice once to take away the sins of many. He will appear a second time, not to deal with sin, but to save those who are waiting for Him. ~ Hebrews 9:27-28  GNT ~

Do you believe this? Would you like to be born again and saved, so that you can spend eternity with the King of all kings and Lord of all lords? Would you like to have a personal relationship with the One who loved you before He laid the foundations of the earth?

Even before He made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in His eyes. ~ Ephesians 1:4  NLT ~

If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by openly declaring your faith that you are saved. ~ Romans 10:9-10  NLT ~

Do you believe all of this? If so, openly declare it, so that all will know that you have been reborn. Then, to help you grow in your faith, begin reading and studying the Bible, for its pages contain God’s word. You don’t need to read large portions either. Instead, before you begin to read, ask God to give you an understanding heart. Then, read a small portion of it… (i.e. – John 1 is a good place to start, so begin reading John 1:1-5. Then, read it again, out loud, and meditate {think} about what it says. You might want to study just that small portion for a week, and write your thoughts about it. Then, begin reading the next portion and meditate on it.) [If you don’t have a bible, you can visit Bible Gateway and read the bible in any version you prefer. Try several different versions, and see which ones are the easiest to understand.]

Also, ask God to place other believers in your life, so that you can worship with them and grow spiritually. Welcome into the family of God, beloved reader. If I can help you in your new walk with God, write me a message and I will answer you and pray for you. God bless you!

© 2014
Cheryl A. Showers

Woe To Those Who Call Evil Good and Good Evil

20 Woe to those who call evil good
and good evil,
who change darkness into light
and light into darkness,
who change bitter into sweet
and sweet into bitter!

21 Woe to those seeing themselves as wise,
esteeming themselves as clever.

22 Woe to those who are heroes at drinking wine,
men whose power goes to mixing strong drinks,
23 who acquit the guilty for bribes
but deny justice to the righteous!

~ Isaiah 5:20-23 — CJB ~

phil-robertson-getty-gospel-according-to-phil-gq-magazineIt’s all over the news, and since everyone else is weighing in, I’m going to weigh in too. Were Phil Robertson’s statements regarding homosexuality crude? Yes. Is homosexuality — i.e. – sin — crude? Absolutely.

Would I have stated things differently than Phil Robertson? Perhaps, but in the end, when you weigh it all out, we would have both ended up meaning the same thing…

Before addressing this as a woman of God, which is what I am first and foremost, I’m going to address this as an American citizen. An American citizen can go on television and curse and swear, using all sorts of coarse language, and those rights are protected. American citizens go on television, rapping and singing songs with suggestive lyrics that are extremely crude. On both daytime and nighttime tv, you see men and women fornicating and having adulterous affairs, and as if that wasn’t enough, there are shows such as “Glee”, which promotes the homosexual lifestyle.

I and many others find these things terribly offensive — much more offensive than what Phil Robertson said, and yet these things continue to air on television day in and day out, and I see no network executives stepping in to suspend those involved in such poor behavior. Indeed, the writers, producers and actors of such smut receive ridiculously large paychecks to reward their behavior. Could it be that there is a double standard here? Could it be that those who cry out so loudly for tolerance are indeed the least tolerant of all people? That’s my take on things as an American citizen…

Now, for my take on things as a woman of God, I applaud Phil, no matter how crude his remarks were, because as I said before, the sin of homosexuality is crude, and often, in times past, remarks that have been perceived by one side or the other as crude or harsh have been made against sin…

If a man goes to bed with a man as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they must be put to death; their blood is on them.

~ Leviticus 20:13 — CJB ~

18 What is revealed is God’s anger from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people who in their wickedness keep suppressing the truth; 19 because what is known about God is plain to them, since God has made it plain to them.20 For ever since the creation of the universe his invisible qualities — both his eternal power and his divine nature — have been clearly seen, because they can be understood from what he has made. Therefore, they have no excuse;21 because, although they know who God is, they do not glorify him as God or thank him. On the contrary, they have become futile in their thinking; and their undiscerning hearts have become darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they have become fools! 23 In fact, they have exchanged the glory of the immortal God for mere images, like a mortal human being, or like birds, animals or reptiles!

24 This is why God has given them up to the vileness of their hearts’ lusts, to the shameful misuse of each other’s bodies.25 They have exchanged the truth of God for falsehood, by worshipping and serving created things, rather than the Creator — praised be he for ever. Amen. 26 This is why God has given them up to degrading passions; so that their women exchange natural sexual relations for unnatural; 27 and likewise the men, giving up natural relations with the opposite sex, burn with passion for one another, men committing shameful acts with other men and receiving in their own persons the penalty appropriate to their perversion. 28 In other words, since they have not considered God worth knowing, God has given them up to worthless ways of thinking; so that they do improper things. 29 They are filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and vice; stuffed with jealousy, murder, quarrelling, dishonesty and ill-will; they are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God; they are insolent, arrogant and boastful; they plan evil schemes; they disobey their parents; 31 they are brainless, faithless, heartless and ruthless. 32 They know well enough God’s righteous decree that people who do such things deserve to die; yet not only do they keep doing them, but they applaud others who do the same.

~ Romans 1:18-32 — CJB ~

Let’s be honest, these scripture passages have offended the homosexual community for quite some time, and many claim that because Jesus Himself did not speak these words, nor did He specifically say anything containing the words “homosexuality,” then He must not have been against it, and was therefore for it. There are even different factions, who call themselves a part of the church, who openly practice homosexuality, and claim to be Christians, but brothers and sisters, whether these words offend you or not, I must speak the truth, because some things ought not be, and I would rather that you live and know the truth, than die, believing a lie from the pit of hell.

Firstly, although Jesus never specifically addressed the issue of homosexuality, He did address marriage…

5 But Yeshua said to them, “He wrote this commandment for you because of your hardheartedness. 6 However, at the beginning of creation, God made them male and female. 7 For this reason, a man should leave his father and mother and be united with his wife, 8 and the two are to become one flesh. Thus they are no longer two, but one. 9 So then, no one should break apart what God has joined together.”

~ Mark 10:5-9 — CJB ~

As you can clearly see here, the only marriage acknowledged by Jesus, who was co-Creator of the universe, was the marriage between a man and a woman – period. His very ommission of homosexuality in this instance made it clear that it was never a part of His equation. Further, Jesus also made this statement while He walked the earth in the flesh…

17 “Don’t think that I have come to abolish the Torah or the Prophets. I have come not to abolish but to complete. 18 Yes indeed! I tell you that until heaven and earth pass away, not so much as a yud or a stroke will pass from the Torah — not until everything that must happen has happened. 19 So whoever disobeys the least of these mitzvot and teaches others to do so will be called the least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But whoever obeys them and so teaches will be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven. 20 For I tell you that unless your righteousness is far greater than that of the Torah-teachers and P’rushim, you will certainly not enter the Kingdom of Heaven!

~ Matthew 5:17-20 — CJB ~

Jesus did not come to abolish the Law. He came to complete the Law. Part of the Law was that homosexuality is an abomination. That did not change when Jesus came. Indeed, Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. What has always been sin in times past, continues to remain sin. The difference is that now, He has given us a way of escape from those sins that once bound us.

You see, the sins that once bound me, no longer have the same power over me, not because I have become a better person, but because Christ has redeemed my life from the pit. When He revealed my sinful nature to me, I had a choice… I could either rebel from Him and this revelation and continue living in sin according to my will… or I could repent and cry out for His mercy and forgiveness, asking Him to change what I was powerless to do on my own. I chose the latter, and if there is any good in me, it is only through His mercy and grace.

Each and every person who was confronted with the words from Phil Robertson’s mouth a few days ago, were also given a choice, just as those who choose to read this post also have the same choice. You can choose to rebel against the truth of God’s word and continue in sin, or you can repent and cry out to God for mercy, in Jesus’ name.

For “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

~ Romans 10:13 — NLT ~

So, what do you think? Was Phil Robertson right or wrong? The fact is that the Lord uses all kinds of strange people to spread His gospel… He once spoke to a rebellious prophet through the mouth of an ass. He spoke to a rebellious people through a wailing prophet named Jeremiah, and let’s not forget that the Lord commanded the prophet Isaiah to prophesy nude for three years… John the Baptist was a wild man clothed in camel’s hair with unkempt hair and unshaven face (sounds kind of like the Robertson’s, huh?), who ate locusts and honey…

27 But God chose what the world considers nonsense in order to shame the wise; God chose what the world considers weak in order to shame the strong; 28 and God chose what the world looks down on as common or regards as nothing in order to bring to nothing what the world considers important; 29 so that no one should boast before God.

~ 1 Corinthians 1:27-29 — CJB ~

The fact is that He’s chosen this foolish woman to share these words with you today. We are liivng in a time when people are calling good evil, and evil good, and if those who know the truth refuse to speak the truth in love, for fear of being labeled bigots or intolerant, then we become just as guilty as those who try to silence us. Therefore, I will not be silent. Those who know me and love me know that I am not bigoted.

However, I will gladly state that I am indeed intolerant. I am intolerant of sin. I am intolerant of a world that calls good evil and evil good. I am intolerant of those who would try to silence righteousness by any means of bullying, and I will not be silent. Homosexuality is sin. This is NOT hate speech. This is TRUTH speech. Sin kills. I speak the truth to you in LOVE, because it is not God’s will that any should perish, and how will anyone know the truth, if everyone is afraid to speak it, for fear of losing their jobs, or being labeled as an intolerant bigot. I say it again. I AM INTOLERANT of sin, because it destroys lives, and relationships. I AM INTOLERANT of homosexuality, (SIN), because it leads to death, and no matter how anyone labels it or entitles it, the wages of sin is death.

Beloved, this is not God’s will for anyone. It is the thief’s desire to steal, kill and destroy you, but Christ came to give you life, more abundantly. Won’t you repent of your sin and call upon His name and be saved?

© 2013
Cheryl A. Showers

Update on My Mother

Greetings My Beloved Brothers and Sisters in the Lord,

I would like to thank each one of you for praying for my mother and my family. I know God heard our prayers, and on Friday night, February 15, at approximately 11:00pm, my mother went home to be with the Lord. I praise God, because He took her gently, as my sister, me and our husbands sat beside her praying, for her and talking to her.

I’ve always loved my mother, but now, in her absence, I’m coming to realize just how precious she was to me. Please continue to pray for my sister and I, as we adjust to life without our mother. I truly appreciate your prayers, and I hold fast to the hope that one day, when I step over into glory, I will again see my mom’s sweet face. I look forward to that day, when I will see her in no more pain, with no more sorrows and no more fear.

May the Lord bless each and every one of you for your continued prayers!

In Christ’s Love,
Cheryl