Dear Ministry Friends,
At the end of July in 1980, I was
driving west on Highway 380 passing an E-Z Check convenience store
when I prayed, "Lord, I will do whatever you want me
to do. I will go wherever you want me to go and I will say whatever
you want me to say." At that moment, a hand came
on my right shoulder and God spoke audibly to me in my car. My
life was forever changed as I was called into the ministry by
"the hand of the Lord."
Immediately I had an overwhelming
desire to stay in God's will. I knew the Bible well enough that
I could adjust my life to the "do and don'ts" of written
scripture. But, there were so many decisions I had to make that
were not covered by the written Word. In fact, there were hundreds
of decisions in the various areas of my life every month that
were not covered by God's written Word, and it seemed like there
were only a handful of decisions that were!
I knew the answer was "to be
led by the Holy Spirit." But I was not hearing the audible
voice of God on a regular basis, and certainly not hundreds of
times per month. So I began studying diligently to know how to
be led by God's Spirit. The principles I found have made a tremendous
difference in my life, family, and ministry. I have practiced
the principles God gave me in many arenas of life from jobs, to
raising children, to Bible smuggling. And when I was in Russia
and Communist Eastern Europe and my physical well being was at
stake, I definitely wanted to be led by God's Spirit. And I saw
these principles of guidance deliver me several times.
The years of study I put into this
topic resulted in a six tape teaching series I have offered for
a number of years. People have told me these teachings have really
helped them. I also have had a desire to turn all of my tapes
into book form, and the first teaching in this series is now available
in print. It is the most important of the six teachings.
I am offering this first book to
my ministry friends at no charge for a limited time to give you
the chance to glean from my experiences and the insights God has
given me. If you can send an offering, it could help pay to print
the other five books in the series. But even if this is not an
ideal moment to send an offering, please feel free to order the
book. The decision will change your life for the better.
And on the topic of decisions, someone
once said, "We make our decisions, then our decisions
make us." That is why it is so important to be led by
the Spirit in our decision making. Everything we say and do has
consequences it is just a matter of when and how those
consequences occur. "Do not be deceived, God is not
mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap."
6:7 NKJ). The only question is when we will reap.
Unsaved people often think they are
getting away with some things, when in reality they are simply
waiting for their appointment with the Judge! He is a very patient
Judge (see 2nd
Peter 3:9), and He doesn't mind giving people 70 or 80 years
before their "court date."
I ministered in two different state
prisons last week and talked to the men there about the law of
consequences. A person's life today is a result of the decisions
he or she made in days gone by. But the good news is that a person's
life tomorrow can be better because of the good decisions he or
she starts making today.
But what about the things we have
already done or said that have produced negative consequences
in our lives? Is there anything we can do about them? This was
another area I began to study diligently in the early 1980's.
And the Lord showed me dramatically and clearly in scripture the
answers to the questions I had.
Christians also eventually experience
the consequences of our decisions in one form or another (just
more slowly under grace). But one tremendous truth God showed
me is that we can sow mercy towards others and reap mercy
back when we need it most. I've experienced this effect many times,
but one example from my life illustrates this in a unique way.
I was driving back from a prayer
meeting I led one night in 1991. I was not able to get across
a very large boulevard intersection before the light turned red.
I got a traffic ticket, and subsequently showed up for my court
date. The judge was a "hanging judge" and was giving
maximum punishments to the various individuals in front of me.
Being on an associate pastor's salary at the time, I really dreaded
the almost $100 fine and increases in my car insurance rates.
When the bailiff called my name,
I walked to the front. The judge, whom I had never seen before
in my life, was looking at the top copy of my ticket. After a
few moments of silence, the judge declared, "I can't find
a date on this ticket. Case dismissed." I mumbled something
respectful and walked out of the courtroom. Then, I quickly pulled
out of my pocket my copy of the ticket to discover a date
was on the ticket in three places! (I still have my copy of the
ticket.) My only conclusion was that God "blinded" the
judge's eyes. As I drove away, the Lord spoke to me and said it
was because I had sowed a lot of mercy towards people who didn't
deserve it and therefore He caused me to reap mercy even
though I was guilty, too.
2:13 NAS says, "For judgment will be merciless
to one who has shown no mercy, (but), mercy triumphs over judgment."
Now we have to be careful not to sow injustice thinking it is
mercy, but this principle from scripture can be a powerful force
to help our lives. I cannot fully explain everything that relates
to this principle in a short newsletter format, so I am offering
a teaching tape titled The Law of Consequences at no charge. God
has given me tremendous insights into many spiritual principles
from His Word. Let me share them with you.
You are important to God and to us.
Your life has great potential. And we appreciate your relationship
with our ministry. Your prayers and financial offerings are greatly
P.S. Life is a spiritual battle.
The Law of Consequences tape I just mentioned is from my ten tape
series, Winning at Spiritual Warfare. People
have told me it has powerfully changed their lives and others.