Saturday, April 2, 2022

April 2, 2022

Within the city of Tampa, there is a historical place called Ybor City. It’s an old city where you can take a trip back into history by walking its streets. Evil forces have taken over much of it, which is confirmed by the kinds of shops and nightclubs presented there. Yet, something draws you to want to reminisce about the old days and immerse yourself in the Latin culture. A friend and I had lunch there, and we got a wild hair to go looking for the infamous tunnels, bolitas, as they were called back in their day. These tunnels were said to help move alcohol during prohibition. Together we were pretty brave and found many clues that led us to believe that the rumors were true. The door to the Italian Club was opened, so we walked in and took a look around. We got our biggest clue there because we were at street level, and there was an elevator located on the outside of the building that went down. 

Nothing unusual happened until we found the door to the Cuban Club open and went in. It was rumored that a child had died in the swimming pool back in Ybor’s hay day and that his ghost was there. I don’t believe in ghosts, only demons, and there was definitely a demon living there, probably more than one! When we walked in, we immediately felt a heaviness. We continued to look around, but the air seemed to become thin and made it hard to breathe even with the doors open! We didn’t find any tunnels because they prohibited us from looking further. Why am I telling you this story? Because it’s exciting and because it confirmed that there is a physical way to discern between the spirits. What the devil intended for evil, God intended for good. The demons didn’t know they were doing me a favor, or they probably would have disappeared into the walls. They were stirred by our presence because of our association with Jesus. I know this is true because a guy working there didn’t seem to be affected. I knew I could discern between the spirits, but confirmation is always welcomed. 

Pray for discernment. You need to know what you are dealing with day in and day out to understand how to pray.

But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil. Hebrews 5:14

Friday, April 1, 2022

April 1, 2022

We were getting ready to go to sleep last night when Rudy started barking. A few intruders felt it was okay to roam our property at night looking for treasures to steal, so we are jittery when it’s dark and our dogs bark. Richard ran out the front door with a gun, and I ran to the kitchen to turn on the outside lights so I could see into the backyard. And there it was! The biggest raccoon I’ve ever seen! He was about the size of a bear cub and was looking at Rudy and me wondering what we would do about it. He had tried to get into the bird feeder, and Rudy heard him and went berserk! I was thankful it wasn’t a human. It’s one thing for an animal to creep around the property, but an entirely different thing when a human stalks around in the dark. Security cameras are going up everywhere today to give us a bit of peace. The trail cameras have been great and have caught a few pictures of the trespassers. Still, these cameras will provide us with a clearer picture if any intruders come near. 

Having Jesus is like having cameras everywhere; he knows the intruder, the enemy who seeks to take our souls. He has eyes everywhere! However, we must be vigilant and trust him because he is the only one who can save us from the enemy’s snare. 

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the LORD, “My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness is a shield and buckler. You will not fear the terror of the night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in darkness, nor the destruction that wastes at noonday. Psalms 91:1-6

Thursday, March 31, 2022

March 31, 2022

It was such a beautiful day yesterday that I decided to do some work in the yard. We have a circular driveway with a retaining wall; the landscaping was inconsistent and full of weeds, so I removed all of it and will eventually fill it with mulch or rocks. My body hurts, but I think it was worth it. As I cleared the debris, I found some unusual things buried within it, things that were good but didn't belong there, so I removed them and put them into the trash. Some good plants ended up in the trash pile, too; all of this is to give a clean and clear view.

When you finally decide to clear your mind and stop dwelling on the negativity of your past, you may need to get rid of some things you consider good. Friends or family members may bring up things from the past that you may or may not have done; they are traumatized and dwell in their past by constantly talking about their pain. They need to be removed, even if it's only temporary. Once you've done your part to introduce them to Jesus, you can't help them anymore; only Jesus can. They are victims of themselves and have never moved towards the light of God's salvation. It may hurt to separate yourself from them, but getting a clean and clear view will be worth it.

Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye. “Do not give dogs what is holy, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, lest they trample them underfoot and turn to attack you. Matthew 7:4-6

Wednesday, March 30, 2022

March 30, 2022

I spent a wonderful day with my mother at Marie Selby Gardens in Sarasota. It was the perfect spring day, slightly cool but warmed by the sun. The breeze coming off the Gulf of Mexico and Sarasota Bay was a delight and gave us a hint of salty air to clear our lungs. We meandered through the garden at a slow pace, soaking in all the beauty of God’s unusual creations and staying in awe of the intricate detail of his design. I’m thankful to God for giving us a feast for our eyes, but I’m most grateful for the time I got to spend with my mother. God gave us things to do here on earth, but he’s primarily concerned about our quality time with one another and cultivating relationships. If your only care is where your next dollar is coming from, you need to stop and ask yourself why you are doing what you’re doing. If it’s to spend more time with your family, you might be on the right track, but if it’s only to have extraordinary things that money can buy, you may need to reassess your values. Jesus is about relationships; follow his example.

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:34-35

Tuesday, March 29, 2022

March 29, 2022

The crimes against humanity are beginning to add up. You can’t treat God’s creation with disdain, withhold help, and expect to get away with it for very long. When the world’s governments release biological warfare on their people, you know their time is short. 

Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Go in, tread, for the winepress is full. The vats overflow, for their evil is great. Joel 3:13

However, because we love the Lord, we dwell in the safety of his stronghold. 

The LORD roars from Zion, and utters his voice from Jerusalem, and the heavens and the earth quake. But the LORD is a refuge to his people, a stronghold to the people of Israel. Joel 3:16

What comes next is nothing but glorious; we will live in prosperity, the way God intended. Evil will be gone, and everyone will know that our God reigns!

“And in that day the mountains shall drip sweet wine, and the hills shall flow with milk, and all the streambeds of Judah shall flow with water; and a fountain shall come forth from the house of the LORD and water the Valley of Shittim. Joel 3:18

Monday, March 28, 2022

March 28, 2022

God is so good and loves us so much; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Our enemies have come against us at every turn, but do not worry, he sees what they have done and doesn’t like it one bit! Children are stolen, trafficked, and traded into slavery; if you don’t think this is happening, you have your head buried in the sand.

and have cast lots for my people, and have traded a boy for a prostitute, and have sold a girl for wine and have drunk it. Joel 3:3

Remember, God cares nothing about material possessions; his care lies in people, so he means people when he mentions gold and silver.

For you have taken my silver and my gold, and have carried my rich treasures into your temples. Joel 3:5

Even though it seems like Baal and Baphomet are relics of the past, believe me when I tell you it’s alive and well today. These people are sick, and the people of God are becoming stirred and are beating their plows into swords; the army of God’s people are on their way! We are closer than ever to seeing God bring his recompense on the wicked! 

Behold, I will stir them up from the place to which you have sold them, and I will return your payment on your own head. Joel 3:7

Beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruning hooks into spears; let the weak say, “I am a warrior.” Joel 3:10

Sunday, March 27, 2022

March 27, 2022

God will restore what the enemy has taken from his people, while those who've chosen the dark side watch. It says that they will know that the Lord is among his people. For those who say, "why does it say Israel?" remember, God has grafted us in, we are adopted, because Jesus chooses us. 

You shall know that I am in the midst of Israel, and that I am the LORD your God and there is none else. And my people shall never again be put to shame. Joel 2:27

When comparing this portion of scripture to Revelation, God may have given Joel a vision pointing to the 1000 years of peace that coincides with God's restoration of everything the enemy has taken; the similarities are there. It says among the survivors will be those whom the LORD calls; that's us! Then comes the judgment. Thankfully we have Jesus who covers our sins; it will not be such a great day for those who rejected him.

And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the LORD has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the LORD calls. Joel 2:32