Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Let It Live!

The Holy Spirit reminded us of emails that we released eight years ago in the weeks following the 2008 Presidential election. At that time, as it is in this time, Christians were divided and confused about what to do in perilous times. 

Last week, we received the highest number of responses to our weekly e-newsletter, than in any previous edition. That tells us that many hearts were stirred regarding the issue of knowing who their true King is. We stand corrected in one of our observations from last week. This is not so much a time of DIVIDING the Body of Christ, as it is a time of DISCERNING the Body of Christ. Now we will discover who understands what it means to be a part of the Body of Christ, and who simply holds a few religious beliefs. 

Change has come to America. In my humble view, we are no longer one nation under God. We have become many nations, bowing to many gods. With that altered view of where our nation truly stands, we can still prepare ourselves to go forth anyway, into this changed world as ONE Body to do God's will.

The real revelation of this so-called “New America” is that the term Christian does not mean the same thing to every American. Today, there are many definitions of that word. The main issue is that many citizens of our nation have made it clear, even before the election, that they don’t want God, His Word, His ways, or His influence in their lives. 

So how do we proceed from this moment on? Carol and I believe that God has appointed this moment to be part of the history of this nation, but it is for reasons that are known only to Him and His sovereign will. As a result, there is a new level of dependence upon God that has developed in our hearts.

Over the last two weeks we've been talking about what it takes to live in the eye of the hurricane. First we discussed the Peace of God and then we encouraged you to keep the unity of the Spirit. 

This week we want to conclude this discussion with the final portion of our focus scripture, Colossians 3:16, which tells us:  

...Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another in all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.

That's a lot of scripture to attempt to discuss, so we'll sum it up with this: Let the Word of God really live in you.  We're not going to be able to navigate in the eye of the storm if we don't recognize the voice and will of God. The only way to consistently recognize God's voice and will is to know God's Word. We can't truly stay in step with Him if we don't live in His Word and let His Word live in us. 

As we read this verse it occurred to us that we can always teach and admonish one another, but the question is, are we teaching from the wisdom that comes from the Word of God? 

James 3:15 declares that there is a wisdom that does not descend from above, but it is earthly, sensual and demonic.

If we operate in the kind of wisdom that comes from natural thinking, our own feelings, or even from the realm of the demonic, we will find ourselves in the midst of the destructive storm of division, instead of moving in the eye of the storm, in the peace of God. 

In fact, this same Bible passage goes on to say: 
...the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. 

Wow! Isn't this a great thing to know?

Finally, we are encouraged to literally sing the Word of God. God understands something about us in that the Word is able to get anchored in our spirit when we sing it. We all know how quickly we memorized commercials and theme songs to TV shows. That's because we sang them to ourselves and those songs became a part of our thinking and behavior. How much more will happen in us if we SING the realities of the Word of God?

So let the Word of God LIVE in you! 

We believe God's Word will become an internal compass with which we can navigate in the eye of the storm. No matter how difficult the future may be for the world around us, we will prevail and prosper in the purpose of God because His Word is alive within us.

This e-newsletter was originally written in November of 2008 and it still applies to us today.

For the least of these, 

Chris and Carol Green (D.Hon.Causa)

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

United in the Storm

The Holy Spirit reminded us of emails that we released eight years ago in the weeks following the 2008 presidential election. At that time, as it is in this time, Christians were divided and confused about what to do in these perilous times. This is what we wrote to our small church congregation in November of 2008:

Last night our nation elected another president and no matter if whether your candidate was chosen or not, we are facing many storms in our future. I personally believe the first one will be a storm of division, which always strikes after an election. This time it will have a significant affect on the Church in America because the polls within the Church show the Body of Christ was divided along racial, political and social lines during this election. 

Since the Church in America is so divided over the candidate choices, we have found it necessary to minister on a HIGHER and more meaningful level than politics and race.

So you ask, what could possibly be more important than politics and race, especially since the issues that were raised were deeply spiritual and moral?

We choose to focus on the HEARTS of men, women, boys and girls, because the Bible declares that from the heart, spring the issues of life. This is where our political views are birthed.

Proverbs 4:23 reads: Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life. 

So, before we start discussing the issues of life (politics and race), we have to deal with the HEART.  Many hearts have not been kept (guarded and protected). They have been broken, wounded, damaged, crushed, twisted, perverted, distorted, etc. People take their personal and political positions (the issues of life), based upon what has happened in and to their hearts.

Last week we started talking about Living in the Eye of the Hurricane. We felt this was necessary to discuss because we believe storms are on the way. However, if our lives are built on the rock-solid foundation of Jesus Christ and His Word, we will withstand the winds, rain and floods that are coming. We will be required to learn what it means to stay in the eye of the storm.

After last night’s presidential election, we know that millions of people will come away from it with a lot of complaining. The election results have the potential to bring more division, than ever before, into the Church in America. Somebody’s expectations were not met and the complaining has already begun. 

But look at the first portion of this scripture in Colossians 3:15-16, which tells us: 

"…And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord." 

If we’re going to get through the coming storm of division, we must let the peace of God rule, to which we are called in one body. That’s why we declare that no matter who has won the elections at state and federal levels, the Body of Christ must have a different perspective. Our goals and objectives go beyond politics, race and social reform. We are called in ONE BODY, not one political party.

We must let the peace of God rule in our hearts because we are called in ONE Body.

That’s why, especially after this election, we must be thankful. Give thanks to God, no matter who has won the election. Even if you feel the absolute wrong person was chosen, you and I must MOVE WITH the peace of God, in the eye of the storm. Be thankful that we can take the fight for righteousness to another level, over and above the political process. We can take it to the Lord, in prayer.

Look at Ephesians 4: 1-4. Paul writes: “I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling.”

This passage opens up a whole new understanding for us in this season. Paul is saying clearly: "....even though I'm in a tough situation, I beg you to walk worthy of the calling." He even tells us how to do it. He tells us the real point of it all, which is to endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 

There’s that word peace again. We have to MOVE TOGETHER in the eye of the storm. We won’t all approve of the direction that our nation is going, but since our calling is higher, our goal must be higher. Our purpose is above the earthly agendas.

So we are urging you to not get caught up in the swift moving storm of division that is coming against the Church. Everyone is not pleased with the election, but if we turn from putting our hopes in an earthly leader, to placing our hope in the Lord Jesus Christ, we can move forth with our Kingdom of God mandate. We can truly keep the unity of the spirit and the bond of peace. This will keep us united in the eye of the storm.

This e-newsletter was originally written in November of 2008 and it still applies to us today.

For the least of these, 

Chris and Carol Green (D.Hon.Causa)

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

In the Eye of the Hurricane

As the election draws closer, we can feel the tension rising in our entire country. We also sense a lot of anxiety among many Believers who are still unsure about what do. As we prepared to write this week’s letter, the Holy Spirit reminded us of emails that we released eight years ago in the weeks leading up to the 2008 Presidential election. 

At that time, as it is in this time, Christians were divided and confused about what to do in perilous times. This is what we wrote to our small congregation in October of 2008:

We're living in such a critical time in the history of mankind that I've found myself in deep prayer and thought about what to share with you this week. The financial markets of the world are collapsing, crime and violence are soaring, persecution is increasing against the church around the world, and we're about to transition into new leadership in this country. 

As we have prayed and asked the Lord how to navigate the days ahead of us, we have heard this one word of instruction: You must learn to live in the eye of the hurricane.

The eye of the hurricane has to be one of the most phenomenal wonders of the world. How is it possible that in the center of this horrible storm, where the wind can exceed 150 miles per hour, that the atmosphere can be peaceful, calm and even sunny? As the storm moves along the ocean's surface, it is picking up energy and growing worse, but the center remains calm.

We find it interesting that the only way you can stay in the center of the storm (prophetically in the peace and presence of God), is to keep moving. You can’t just stand still. You can’t be passive and comfortable.  If you try to maintain your personal space of comfort, you will find yourself caught in the outer perimeter of the storm. The eye of the storm is moving because the storm is moving.  So you have to keep moving with the peace of God in the midst of the storm.

Colossians 3:15-16 tells us how to keep moving with the peace of God in the midst of the storm. 

…And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. 

This week, let’s talk about letting the peace of God rule. This phrase means, we must be governed and led by the assurance of God Himself. That means He will direct us to go places, meet with people, and do things that we may not want to do.  So we must learn the difference between the peace of God and the peace of our own hearts and minds. 

Sometimes there’s no peace in our mind about doing certain things or going certain places because of our bad memories and our negative experiences. Many people have to learn the difference between their own personal peace and the peace of God. 

Since we’ve been in our current roles of ministering in this community, we have seen scores of people who are led by their own personal peace.  If they don’t feel right about something, they won’t do it, even when God is clearly leading them in a different direction. 

Even after God has clearly proven that it was Him directing their steps, they still allow their past to rule their hearts. They allow previous church experiences to rule their hearts. They allow their personal preferences to rule their hearts. They allow their expectations to rule their hearts. They allow the way others treated them to rule their hearts.

We recently heard a well-known television minister declare that they don’t go places where they are merely TOLERATED, but they only go to places where they are CELEBRATED. That’s a very powerful, but unscriptural approach to following God. What happened to OBEDIENCE TO GOD? 

I don’t know of any of God’s prophets, apostles, preachers, or leaders who were living by that standard. Not only were most of them not celebrated, but they were hated. We don’t only go where we feel we will personally benefit from the experience. You and I must go wherever God says for us to go. (And do what He commands us to do).

As the storm is moving, we have to move with the eye of the storm (the Peace of God). What if the eye of the storm leads you to fellowship with people you don’t usually hang out with? That’s what happened to Peter.  What if the eye of the storms positions you to work for your captors? That’s what happened to Daniel, Ezra and Nehemiah. What if the eye of the storm leads you to join a small group of people like our home church family or some other new gathering of believers in your community? What if the peace of God leads you away from all that is familiar and comfortable? 

Even today, as the current (political) storm moves and the peace of God moves, we are facing major decisions. This time we must be faithful and obedient to move with God in the midst of the storm.

In 2004, Carol and I left all that was familiar, prosperous and comfortable, to move to this region.  Since we’ve been here, we’ve continually been required to move with the eye of the storm and remain in the peace and rest of God. (And this has been a very difficult storm to navigate). 

God’s peace led us out of full-time (and propserous) ministry and into the marketplace. God’s peace led us away from gathering within church facilities and into a home group gathering. God’s peace led us onto the internet and into our current multi-media outreaches. We recently discovered that God is directing many church planters in the same strategies all around the world because of the storms that are coming forth on many nations, the world and the Church.

We have often asked God why we were moving in this direction, but He keeps assuring us that a day will come when people will search for those who are lifting up Jesus and not lifting up personalities. They will look for people who are real as they grow weary of their traditions, religions and politics. So we’ll just keep moving with the eye of the storm, in the peace of God.

Right now, many are finding their jobs threatened and their families in crisis. Even some church communities are beginning to waiver in fear.  We encourage you to abandon your fear and just flow with God.  He is trustworthy.  So this week, the Word for all of us is, “Keep moving with the peace of God.” 

This e-newsletter was written in October of 2008 and it still applies to us today.

For the least of these, 

Chris and Carol Green (D.Hon.Causa)

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

The Sword of the Lord Prevails

As many of you may know, Israel is celebrating the fall feasts, a special season of biblical holidays. These annual holy days begin with Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, and include Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. 

We just held an all-night prophetic prayer session this past weekend as part of exhortation, worship and acknowledgement of 12 years of ministering in the Harrisburg urban community. Every year we use this time to rehearse the prophetic declarations that have been made over us, this ministry, and this city. We also cast vision for the upcoming year, connecting with and focusing on the prophetic significance of the meaning of the upcoming Jewish New Year.

Many, who receive our weekly newsletters, are not part of Christian fellowships that follow the annual holy days, feasts and celebrations. Most have been taught that the original apostles of the early church stated that they would not place any burdens on the Gentiles beyond a few stipulations regarding what they eat, idol worship, and sexual immorality. Therefore, they don’t really “get into" these Jewish traditions.

We’re not here to debate that. However, at the very least, we’d like for you to consider seeing these celebrations and feasts as some of the things that we are not required to do, but we have the opportunity, honor and privilege to connect with, so that in some small way we can gain a better understanding of, and more insight into this new life that God has granted to us through His son, Jesus Christ. 

We learned in our studies that we have just entered the Hebrew Calendar Year 5777. We first started looking at the meaning of each year when we came upon the year 5774.  At that time we discovered the meaning of 74 through the Hebrew alphabet/numbers for 70 (ayin) and 4 (dalet). Ayin (pronounced ah yeen), the 16th letter of the Hebrew alphabet, it is a silent letter. There is no translation of it in English.  It sees, but does not speak; representing humility. The name ayin can also mean “eye” or “fountain”.  It teaches us to speak and observe without making a commentary about what we see. 

The Hebrew letter/number 4, is dalet (pronounced dah let) and is represented by the symbol of an open tent or an open door.  At that time, three years ago, the Holy Spirit revealed to us that we were about to see and experience a year of open doors.  For the record we can tell you, that is precisely what happened in our lives and ministry that year.

Since that time, we have eagerly anticipated each year, with its prophetic significance. Now we have entered the year of Ayin (70) Zayin (7).  So let’s take a look at the alphabet and symbol that represents seven. 

Zayin (pronounced Zah yeen) - The number seven has always been regarded in Jewish tradition as the number of completion, wholeness, blessing and rest. However, Zayin is a paradoxical word, since it means “weapon” or “sword”, but derives its meaning from a root word that means sustenance or nourishment. The root word (zan) appears in words like food. So the question is, how is food or nourishment related to the sword? 

We believe the Church is about to experience and see the manifestation of the sword of the Lord.  Our awesome God is about to bring the sword into hearts, homes, schools, businesses, neighborhoods, communities, cities, regions, states, and our entire country. We’re not able to tell you what that will look like, but when it happens, we will each know that whatever is happening, it is because this is The Year of the Sword of the Lord.

At the same time, we are to rest. For us, this is the year of completion, wholeness, blessing and rest. Our God will nourish and sustain us, even as HE fights on our behalf.

We wanted to share this with you as we enter into the month of October, which has annually become filled with the worship of demons, death, witchcraft and the occult. We insist that you make deliberate and intentional efforts to guard your hearts and homes in this season.

Watch and pray over your children and loved ones. It is very important that you monitor what you watch and entertain. Don’t leave an open door anywhere in your life, especially during this season with its heavy influence from satan (we refuse to capitalize that name) himself. If you need assistance with this effort, please order and utilize the prayer strategies in our book, FIGHT FOR YOUR FAMILY.

We encourage you to use this season to fast and pray for your family and friends. Pray about the upcoming elections. Get on the offensive and refuse to allow the enemy of your soul to take any territory in your life. 

We cannot tell you how much we have hated the month of October. One of Chris’ brothers passed away in October. It has been a very difficult month for our whole family. However, THIS YEAR, there is a new spark of faith, hope and anticipation. That’s because we have entered the year in which God will complete many things that HE started in our lives 12 years ago.

We have entered the year of wholeness and healing from our losses and disappointments.
We have entered the year in which God provides for, nourishes and sustains us. We have entered the year when we will see the Sword of the Lord prevail!

For the least of these, 

Drs. Chris and Carol Green