fasting: aligning with God for a money goal

Matthew 6:19-24

I am fasting from the service of money. Lately I find that my increased focus on money has caused thorns and thistles to grow and choke the words in the soft garden of my heart. Thus, I have found an additional purpose to fast. I am fasting from the most prevalent worry of this world, the fear of a lack of money (Actually not for myself, ironically.) Like the Apostle Paul advised, “I train like a champion athlete. I subdue my body and get it under my control.” What has money got to do with subduing the body (physical)? For me and many other born again believers, we believe we need to hear God and receive wisdom to manage our lives on earth. God actually speaks through His revelation words and many other ways. When we are tied down in our physical needs and worrying and occupied mind we just cannot hear Him clearly and align with His plan accurately. Fasting is always accompanied with reading His words and praying. I pray this sharing of my experience encourages you to ponder over how you may hear God too.

As I have written in this blog previously, there are variations and ways to prepare. (click this link to read)

Three types of fasting: Normal- Abstaining from food, solids, liquids except for water. Absolute – Abstaining from everything. (Not more than three days.) Partial (Daniel 10:3) Restricted Diet. Jesus fasted and taught it as a part of the Christian discipline.

You may choose from a long list of choices: 1. the number of days (1, 3, 7, 14, 21, 40) 2. the number of meals to abstain (1, 2, all ) 3. eat vegetables/fruits only 4. no solid intake, drink water/liquid only.

This time I decided to have plain water with no food and solid intake for three days. Prior to this, I did a full 24 hours’ fast as a preliminary trial, followed by a break of taking one light meal a day for two days. I would urge you to follow the prompting you receive from the Lord. How is the fast so far? It is showing positive effect after getting through the tough second day. For new comers, yes, you may feel physically uncomfortable initially. But you can overcome it by focusing on the right source of your strength and purpose. Throughout the Bible God tells us that He is our strength and focus.

1 Corinthians 9:24-27 The Passion Translation (TPT)

Paul’s Disciplined Lifestyle

24 Isn’t it obvious that all runners on the racetrack[a] keep on running to win, but only one receives the victor’s prize? Yet each one of you must run the race to be victorious. 25 A true athlete will be disciplined in every respect, practicing constant self-control in order to win a laurel wreath that quickly withers. But we run our race to win a victor’s crown that will last forever. 26 For that reason, I don’t run just for exercise[b] or box like one throwing aimless punches, 27 but I train like a champion athlete. I subdue my body[c] and get it under my control, so that after preaching the good news to others I myself won’t be disqualified.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Corinthians 9:24 Or “the runners in a stadium.” This refers to the Pan-Hellenic stadium near Corinth where the Isthmian games were held.
  2. 1 Corinthians 9:26 Or “I don’t run aimlessly.” That is, Paul ran with his eyes on the goal of ending well.
  3. 1 Corinthians 9:27 Or “I beat my body black and blue.” This is an obvious metaphor of placing the desires of one’s body as second place to the desires of the Holy Spirit. See Rom. 8:13.

Money Matters: To SERVE money means to place such a high value on it that we develop a wrong priority compared with our relationship with God and others. Here are some symptoms: Place our trust and faith in it. Look to it for our security and happiness. Expect that it will guarantee our future. Desire it more than we desire God (as evidenced by the time we spend with whom). Our life is then spent in the pursuit of it rather than God.

Jesus spoke about money through these Bible verses:

Matthew 6:19-24 New Living Translation (NLT)

Teaching about Money and Possessions

19 “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. 21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.

22 “Your eye is like a lamp that provides light for your body. When your eye is healthy, your whole body is filled with light. 23 But when your eye is unhealthy, your whole body is filled with darkness. And if the light you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is!

24 “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money.

the new transformer

Revelation 18:4-8

Today we are reminded that the ten plagues only struck those who chose not to believe and acknowledge the righteous God whom Moses and his people believed, the same God we believe. Take note the idolatry arrogant heart of Pharaoh caused him to make foolish and self-destructive decisions. He exalted himself above the righteous and holy God. Pharaoh did not fear God because he thought he himself was god. While he comfortably indulged himself in his luxurious palace wining and dining opulently, his people suffered in prolonged incremental fear and torment. He had no love or compassion even for his own people. Why was his heart hardened? He was obsessed with keeping an ample supply of cheap/free labor the miserable enslaved Israelites provided to perpetuate his wealth and related social-political power. He was consumed with jealousy of Moses, a former prince of Egypt, now the formidable great transformer leader championing for the justice, freedom and wellbeing of the Jewish nation.

Moses, on the other hand, after his miraculous encounter with God, was truly supernaturally transformed into a great and courageous leader who at the age of 80 would leave his comfort zone and even stick out his neck for the love of God and God’s own people. What happened in the end? “Exodus 12:40 Now the sojourn of the children of Israel who lived in Egypt was four hundred and thirty years. 41 And it came to pass at the end of the four hundred and thirty years—on that very same day—it came to pass that all the armies of the Lord went out from the land of Egypt.”  The rest is history.

The life of Moses produced good fruit that lasts to eternity. Pharaoh’s life? Plagues and burning.

The First – Fifth Plague Exodus 7-9
The Sixth – Ninth Plague Exodus 9-11
the Tenth Plague Exodus 12


Paul’s testimony: how he uses the mind of Christ

2 Corinthians 6:4

Today we learn how effectively Paul use both his mind and spirit: aligned with the mind of Christ and the Spirit of Christ.

His challenge list reads like a horror movie, far worse than any nightmare: five times whipped with 39 stripes each, three times beaten by rod, once stoned, three times shipwrecked, one night and one day in the deep, in journeys often, in perils of waters, robbers, own countrymen, gentiles, city, wilderness, sea, false brethren, weariness, toil, sleeplessness often, hunger, thirst, fasting often, cold, nakedness, deep concern for all churches, threat of imminent arrest (his life) from city authority. He was in constant physical and mind challenges: in much patience, tribulations, needs, distresses, stripes, imprisonments, tumults, and labors. (2 Corinthians 11:24-26; 6:4-5)

Imagine a human always being hounded, on the look-out, on the run, slandered, taunted, intimidated, verbally and physically abused, violently assaulted, falsely accused, brutally arrested, beaten, condemned as guilty without evidence, imprisoned without a just trial, and always overhung with the death sentence.

But what did Paul say about his conditions? How did he deal with such an overload of injustice and schemes of torments after his life? His letters showed how he looked at things both sides. He lived in both the kingdom of God and the kingdom of man, the spiritual and the physical realms, the temporary and the eternal, the external and the internal, the seen and the unseen. To Paul, both were real. He really experienced them, the natural and the supernatural. By knowing the two parallel realities Paul was able to handle the challenges confidently and overcome them successfully. Because his focus and priority are always on the side of the real victor, Christ.

He explained this plainly in his letters (2 Corinthians 6:6-10). There are two sides in everything: the view of the enemy and the view of a Spirit-filled Christian (reflecting God’s view). The evil and the good. The good will always overpower the evil one. Paul effectively and fearlessly exercised his spiritual power and authority over his unseen foe who worked through other human and natural elements. I append below self-explanatory Bible verses on this awesome revelation!

2 Corinthians 6:4-10 (NKJV)

But in all things we commend ourselves as ministers of God: in much [a]patience, in tribulations, in needs, in distresses, in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in sleeplessness, in fastings; by purity, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by [b]sincere love, by the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, by honor and dishonor, by evil report and good report; as deceivers, and yet true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold we live; as chastened, and yet not killed; 10 as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Corinthians 6:4 endurance
  2. 2 Corinthians 6:6 Lit. unhypocritical

Acts 26:24-26 The Passion Translation (TPT)

24 Festus interrupted Paul’s defense,[a] blurting out, “You’re out of your mind! All this great learning of yours is driving you crazy.”[b]

25 Paul replied, “No, Your Excellency Festus, I am not crazy. I speak the words of truth and reason.[c] 26 King Agrippa, I know I can speak frankly and freely with you, for you understand these matters well, and none of these things have escaped your notice. After all, it’s not like it was a secret!

Footnotes:

  1. Acts 26:24 The Aramaic can be translated “As the Holy Spirit spoke through Paul, Festus interrupted.”
  2. Acts 26:24 Or “So much Scripture has made you senseless!”
  3. Acts 26:25 Or “words of sober truth.”

a new year of walking deeper in the Spirit and healing

Ezekiel 47:8

Towards the end of last year I went through a challenging time in the physical and spiritual realms. The incident drew me to re-examine my daily timetable and reprioritize my life. I decided to get into the spiritual realm to handle it and it meant halting other stuff and adopt a new schedule as follows:

Put God-factor as number One. How? Praying in tongue persistently in most of my waking hours. Read the word of God whilst praying in tongue. My spirit prompted me to read 2 Corinthians so I have been doing that until now. Read. Meditate. Pray. Let the Lord speak to me. Receive and record down His revelation. Meditate and act upon it by faith with the position I have in Christ and the authority I have as a believer.

Result was significant and the manifestation was completely over by the third week. I resumed my normal routine incorporating the modifications as above. The experience changed my perspective and lifestyle. I have been reminded that there is no off time in walking by the Spirit. Discerning from the state of the world today, it is evident that the spiritual realm is getting more real and is increasingly taking precedence over the physical realm.

As I have been praying for new direction this year, I realize that this is a year we need to walk deeper in the Spirit (Ezekiel 47:Again he measured one thousand, and it was a river that I could not cross; for the water was too deep, water in which one must swim, a river that could not be crossed. He said to me, “Son of man, have you seen this?” Then he brought me and returned me to the bank of the river.)

Yesterday while driving I pondered on the purpose of the church (a gathering of Christians) and thought of what Jesus did and what He commissioned His apostles and disciples do, the same and more. Healing is a major need in the physical human world. The ability to heal makes a significant difference in a church compared to others. Weekly I hear of individuals seeking healing from one place to another. I also find that in my current Bible study subjects the topic of healing is really prominent and relevant. Walking in the Spirit means walking in the power of healing because the Spirit gives life to our mortal bodies. This is the direction to develop further this year in our walk with the Lord both as an individual and as an assembly of people together for the purpose of worship, prayer, praise and looking unto God.

Ezekiel 47:When I returned, there, along the bank of the river, were very many trees on one side and the other. Then he said to me: “This water flows toward the eastern region, goes down into the valley, and enters the sea. When it reaches the sea, its waters are healed. And it shall be that every living thing that moves, wherever the rivers go, will live. There will be a very great multitude of fish, because these waters go there; for they will be healed, and everything will live wherever the river goes.

47:12 Along the bank of the river, on this side and that, will grow all kinds of trees used for food; their leaves will not wither, and their fruit will not fail. They will bear fruit every month, because their water flows from the sanctuary. Their fruit will be for food, and their leaves for medicine.”

Steve asks, “How can we operate from a position of love…”

Proverbs 28-4Steve asks, “How can we operate from a position of love as it relates to the violence of liberal assaults without lowering to their level?” watch this answer!
https://www.facebook.com/YourCharis/videos/1775521025910220/

Don’t miss the Truth and Liberty Live cast at 6:00pm MDT.

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Proverbs 28:4 Those who turn their backs on God’s teaching applaud the wicked, while those who observe His instruction oppose them at every turn.

Isaiah 1:26 New Living Translation (NLT)
26 Then I will give you good judges again
and wise counselors like you used to have.
Then Jerusalem will again be called the Home of Justice
and the Faithful City.”

Bible in diagram: John 17:6-8

John 17-6-8.001
Bible verses: John 17:6-8

“I have revealed you to the ones you gave me from this world. They were always yours. You gave them to me, and they have kept your word. Now they know that everything I have is a gift from you, for I have passed on to them the message you gave me. They accepted it and know that I came from you, and they believe you sent me. (John 17:6-8)

John 1:18 No one has ever seen God. But the unique One, who is himself God, is near to the Father’s heart. He has revealed God to us.

John 14:21 Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.”

John 17:26 I have revealed you to them, and I will continue to do so. Then your love for me will be in them, and I will be in them.”

Watchman’s encounter: Awesome God waters His people

psalm 119-103
Psalm 119:103 sweet words from above

It was an awesome spiritual encounter. I was woken by the worship song downstairs. My housemate was ministering to a first year correspondence Bible College student group in the living room. The song was powerfully sung. I thought it was a recorded or online video but the guitar was clear and the surround effect was too good not to be live. They only sang one song, a Chinese original composition called “You are Worthy”. I did not know the number of participants. It sounded like a full house. The music was great and powerful too. I could not figure out whether there was one or two guitars. Then they prayed in tongue. It blended into the music and the song. I became wide awake and joined the praying in tongue in my room.

Later, when their class was over they prayed in tongue again. This time I was sitting at my desk, continuing my own study. I was also praying in tongue. I realized that I was singing in tongue, and it was a gentle beautiful song in an unknown tongue. The students then took turn to pray in understanding. The music was playing softly in the background. After their closing prayers I heard people talking and leaving.

I was impressed to open my Bible to see what the Lord has for me about my tongue (spiritual song). And the verses I received were most appropriate. They are taken from Psalm 119:97-104 MEM. Here is a description of what it means:
It means mighty, overpower.
Meaning: God waters His servants. God gives life-sustaining knowledge to His servants. God waters His people with understanding and insight. The two forms of MEM show Moses (in the open) and the Messiah (the “hidden” water).

The above confirms my spiritual song just now. When I was singing I could feel the flow in my spirit, like calm water, gentle, peaceful and refreshing. I could also feel the joy and sweetness in my soul. The Lord indeed gives understanding and insight to me and the students as they too prayed in tongue, expressing their passion and love for the words of the Lord in their spirit.

It was near midnight when the last of the students left. I then found out that there were only ten students. One young couple served as worship leaders and another older couple could sing very well too. One guitar accompanied the singing. But it was a powerful passionate worship team I heard. Who are the rest? Awesome!

Psalm 119:97-104 New King James Version (NKJV)
מ MEM
97 Oh, how I love Your law!
It is my meditation all the day.
98 You, through Your commandments, make me wiser than my enemies;
For they are ever with me.
99 I have more understanding than all my teachers,
For Your testimonies are my meditation.
100 I understand more than the [a]ancients,
Because I keep Your precepts.
101 I have restrained my feet from every evil way,
That I may keep Your word.
102 I have not departed from Your judgments,
For You Yourself have taught me.
103 How sweet are Your words to my taste,
Sweeter than honey to my mouth!
104 Through Your precepts I get understanding;
Therefore I hate every false way.

Footnotes:
Psalm 119:100 aged

“God will see to it, my son.” He did.

Romans 8-32This morning’s love message is : “God will see to it, my son.” While God will see to it, we need to come to God with a vision, seeing into the unseen by unwavering faith, as led by the Holy Spirit.

(All Scriptures are quoted from NKJV unless otherwise specified)

Indeed, in the classic case of Abraham’s affirmation of his vision of God’s true nature, God saw to it that Abraham and wife did not have to lose their greatest love -their only son, Isaac, born to him and his wife Sarah at their very old age. What did Abraham see when he went to the mountain of vision with his son just as God instructed him to do? He saw the awesome love of God, who provided His own greatest love, the Son of God -Jesus as a substitute for Abraham and Isaac and all mankind!  Jesus became the perfect sacrifice! (Hebrews 10:5-14 “10 By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.”)

God told Abraham to go to the land of Moriah (Hebrew: מוֹרִיָּה‬‬ -“ordained/considered by the LORD”, which is the name given to a mountainous region by the Book of Genesis, in which context it is the location of the intended sacrifice of Isaac. The Vulgate renders the location specified by God for the sacrifice as terram Visionis, traditionally rendered “land of Vision” in Catholic translations.

Genesis 22:2 Then He said, “Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.”

3 So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son; and he split the wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him. 4 Then on the third day Abraham lifted his eyes and saw the place afar off.

22:8 Abraham said, “The lamb for the entirely burned offering? God will see to it, my son.” The two of them walked on together. (CEB)
God will see to it, my son,” Abraham replied. And they went on. (TLB)
Abraham said, “Son, God will see to it that there’s a sheep for the burnt offering.” And they kept on walking together.(MSG)

22:13 Then Abraham lifted his eyes and looked, and there behind him was a ram caught in a thicket by its horns. So Abraham went and took the ram, and offered it up for a burnt offering instead of his son.

Hebrews 11:17-19
By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, 18 of whom it was said, “In Isaac your seed shall be called,” 19 concluding that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead, from which he also received him in a figurative sense.

John 8:55-56 (Jesus said)
Yet you have not known Him, but I know Him. And if I say, ‘I do not know Him,’ I shall be a liar like you; but I do know Him and keep His word. 56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad.”

Where is our land of vision today? Jesus said, “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.” (John 6:63) We can see by reading His words.

We can also see (know) by the Holy Spirit, Jesus said, “the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.” (John 14:17) The Holy Spirit will enables us to see, Jesus said, “However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. 14 He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. 15 All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you.” (John 16:13-15)

What shall we focus on seeing? Like Abraham we only need to focus on seeing God’s great love, “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32)

Awesome! God’s name is LOVE.

the stuff a great king is made of

psalm 64:10The word received on the third day of the 18th week. Very relevant and prophetic. Psalm 64 written by the anointed King David at a time when he was oppressed by the wicked but he chose instead to stay in rejoicing in the Lord! In the midst of major and persistent setbacks he always switched his focus on the Lord. He meditated on and proclaimed the goodness and greatness of God and continued to put his trust on God regardless how persistently hurtful and vengeful his enemies were. God called David, “a man after My heart.”

Dvid was a very smart, capable and brave man. He was a powerful warrior, shrewd diplomat, and talented musician and poet. He was also the architect whom God spoke to and gave the whole detailed building plan for the temple. He did well in accumulating wealth too. He handed over a great fortune to his son Solomon to build the temple for God. He could have lived a peaceful and relaxed life in his own familiar country place with beautiful pasture, streams and flocks of sheep, writing poetry and songs, worshiping and praising God. But he was chosen and anointed by God to become king for Israel, for a mission assigned by God. The former king, King Saul failed as a king. David had to become king. He brought the tribes of Israel together as a unified nation. Did he expect an easy life? No. David knew his destiny but he lived and equipped himself faithfully before God for his seemingly impossible assignment. From his many writings we can see that he could hear God and aligned himself rightly with God’s strategy. This is the stuff a great king is made of.

Psalm 64 (NKJV) David was a prophet king. What he saw would happen to his enemies in the future indeed happened. His enemies’ secret schemes were exposed and they fell into their own snares.

1 Hear my voice, O God, in my meditation;
Preserve my life from fear of the enemy.
2 Hide me from the secret plots of the wicked,
From the rebellion of the workers of iniquity,
3 Who sharpen their tongue like a sword,
And bend their bows to shoot their arrows—bitter words,
4 That they may shoot in secret at the blameless;
Suddenly they shoot at him and do not fear.

5 They encourage themselves in an evil matter;
They talk of laying snares secretly;
They say, “Who will see them?”
6 They devise iniquities:
“We have perfected a shrewd scheme.”
Both the inward thought and the heart of man are deep.

7 But God shall shoot at them with an arrow;
Suddenly they shall be wounded.
8 So He will make them stumble over their own tongue;
All who see them shall flee away.
9 All men shall fear,
And shall declare the work of God;
For they shall wisely consider His doing.

10 The righteous shall be glad in the Lord, and trust in Him.
And all the upright in heart shall glory.

today’s heart cry to the millennials

millennial cry
millennial memes: coming out

Lately I ponder on what might happen when this older generation passes away, particularly those born during or right after the WWII. The former national, social and family values, personal integrity, moral and work ethics have been eroded, depleted and forsaken beyond any imagination during the past five to six decades. When I look at the past, present and future I can feel the increasing sense of urgency now more than ever.

I can feel the same concern and heart cry from my generation. We know the old guards are not hanging around for another innumerable decades and some seniors who are still bravely selflessly holding the fort are in fact rather worn and tired by now. What will happen to this world when the really wise and powerful older seers and prophets pass on to another world? What will happen when no one in the subsequent generations have any interest or ability to see into the spiritual realm and warn mankind?

What will happen when human continues to be satisfied with the superficial level and trust their technology shortcut and ignore the spiritual wickedness which cannot be fought with human weapons? How may the seers and prophets impart/pass on the overcomer’s spiritual sword/key they have guarded so well for millennium?

Where are the seven thousands* the Lord has preserved somewhere in this world? This is the watchman’s heart cry to the millennials.

*(1 Kings 19:18 Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him.)

Hear the Holy Spirit’s cry:
Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says:
“Today, if you will hear His voice,
Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion,
In the day of trial in the wilderness,
Where your fathers tested Me, tried Me,
And saw My works forty years.
Therefore I was angry with that generation,
And said, ‘They always go astray in their heart,
And they have not known My ways.’
So I swore in My wrath,
‘They shall not enter My rest.’”
Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end, while it is said:
“Today, if you will hear His voice,
Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.” (Hebrews 3:7-15)

One great America, one great vision

Amos 3:3
Amos 3:3 One direction for one nation

Who are laughing at American news? The rest of the world? No, America. we don’t enjoy or laugh as we watch your ongoing news “drama”. We are not amused by any long dragged out stalemate show on a serious matter.

The constant bombardment of bad news, like washing personal laundry in public, albeit perhaps a “diversion from boredom” (which in reality, more a diversion from the more serious pertinent unresolved matters between conflicting power interests) to some, no longer draws the right audience. (Please refresh your news-watching market-study on the rest of the world).

When, how and why have you become what your news seems to depict you today? What is your true identity? The crux of the matter seems to be on your definition.

The self-inflicted huge handicap seems unbelievable to the rest of the world. How can a nation be functionally effective when 50% of its population is deemed (in the news) to be against another 50%? How can a football team ever expect to win any game if it’s divided into two halves with each running towards opposite directions (disregarding the rules of the game)? When two equally strong horses refuse to be yoked together and submit to the driver’s directive, instead each tries to pull a cart to the direction opposing that pulled towards by the other horse, whatever products on the cart would have rotted and become useless and of no value if they ever reach the market.

Instead, one nation, one vision, one goal, without the constant bickering and stalemate, and with more focused and more effective use of resources, abilities and strength, the overall good can be achieved within a shorter timeframe at a much lower cost.

Someone may ask the rest of the world: “Why don’t you switch channel?” Well, the reality is that we are all on one earth-stage. We cannot switch channel.

Some may laugh for a while at your presumably internal “squabbles”. But many are realists with the big picture in mind. Of course, we do not presume that we can see the whole picture. But we can watch for and detect good news. Good and tangible news from major players, such as America.

Ideally, great nations, (like successful corporations), display these characteristics: internally excellent: well developed, ethically, efficiently and effectively managed, orderly, safe, successful and prosperous in all aspects of a good life for its own people; externally magnanimously investing: sharing/exporting at affordable prices highly demanded and valued goods and services to the rest of the world; overall focused on being a successful role model of good virtues, capable and ethical stewardship of limited resources (tangible and intangible) other nations would consider beneficial to emulate. (Good and profitable practices can even be packaged and sold to other nations. The world is hungry for successful management models.)

For those of us who believe in the spiritual realm, the accurate and timely aligning role of America (and other great and small nations) with the eternal plan of God for nations is of significant importance.

The watchman therefore urges: Please wake up. America.

We want you well. God wants you well.

Amos 3:3 (NLT)
Can two people walk together
without agreeing on the direction?

how a talking donkey saved a prophet

Balaam and donkey
Balaam, donkey and angel with sword

How did a donkey save a prophet? Why was the donkey, an apparently dumb weight-bearing animal, able to see into the spiritual realm but his master the prophet remained blinded? The following account gives us the answer.

Food for thought: God can enable even an animal see, understand and talk sense. What did the animal gain? He had faithfully served his master since the day he was owned. How did the master treat the donkey? Was Balaam grateful that his donkey saved him from instant death? Did he repent and set the donkey free from bondage? There was no record of any kind acts on the part of Balaam. Instead he went on to his personal destruction in a subsequent war against Israel. If he made his donkey accompany him it could mean that the donkey was killed in the war too due to the personal greed for power and money of his master. Sad end for a gifted prophet and his faithful donkey. Take note that God spoke and warned Balaam repeatedly. He even used the donkey to prevent Balaam from self-destruction.

Meditate on this:
1 Corinthians 1:21 For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.

The account of a faithful talking donkey who saved his master’s life:

“Then the children of Israel moved, and camped in the plains of Moab on the side of the Jordan across from Jericho.
Now Balak (king of Moab)saw all that Israel had done to the Amorites (already defeated by the Israelites). And Moab was exceedingly afraid of the people because they were many, and Moab was sick with dread because of the children of Israel. ..Then he sent messengers to Balaam (a prophet powerful in cursing) ..to call him, saying: “Look, a people has come from Egypt. See, they cover the face of the earth, and are settling next to me! Therefore please come at once, curse this people for me, for they are too mighty for me. Perhaps I shall be able to defeat them and drive them out of the land, for I know that he whom you bless is blessed, and he whom you curse is cursed.”

So the elders …came to Balaam and spoke to him …So Balaam said to God, “Balak…king of Moab, has sent to me, saying, ‘….’”

And God said to Balaam, “You shall not go with them; you shall not curse the people, for they are blessed.”

…Then Balak again sent princes, more numerous and more honorable than they…“Thus says Balak..: ‘Please let nothing hinder you from coming to me; for I will certainly honor you greatly, and I will do whatever you say to me. Therefore please come, curse this people for me.’”

…So Balaam rose in the morning, saddled his donkey, and went with the princes of Moab.

Interaction between Balaam, the Donkey, and the Angel:

Then God’s anger was aroused because he went, and the Angel of the Lord took His stand in the way as an adversary against him. And he was riding on his donkey, and his two servants were with him. Now the donkey saw the Angel of the Lord standing in the way with His drawn sword in His hand, and the donkey turned aside out of the way and went into the field. So Balaam struck the donkey to turn her back onto the road. Then the Angel of the Lord stood in a narrow path between the vineyards, with a wall on this side and a wall on that side. And when the donkey saw the Angel of the Lord, she pushed herself against the wall and crushed Balaam’s foot against the wall; so he struck her again. Then the Angel of the Lord went further, and stood in a narrow place where there was no way to turn either to the right hand or to the left. And when the donkey saw the Angel of the Lord, she lay down under Balaam; so Balaam’s anger was aroused, and he struck the donkey with his staff.

Then the Lord opened the mouth of the donkey, and she said to Balaam, “What have I done to you, that you have struck me these three times?”

And Balaam said to the donkey, “Because you have abused me. I wish there were a sword in my hand, for now I would kill you!”

So the donkey said to Balaam, “Am I not your donkey on which you have ridden, ever since I became yours, to this day? Was I ever disposed to do this to you?”

And he said, “No.”

Then the Lord opened Balaam’s eyes, and he saw the Angel of the Lord standing in the way with His drawn sword in His hand; and he bowed his head and fell flat on his face. And the Angel of the Lord said to him, “Why have you struck your donkey these three times? Behold, I have come out to stand against you, because your way is perverse before Me. The donkey saw Me and turned aside from Me these three times. If she had not turned aside from Me, surely I would also have killed you by now, and let her live.”

And Balaam said to the Angel of the Lord, “I have sinned, for I did not know You stood in the way against me. Now therefore, if it displeases You, I will turn back.”

Then the Angel of the Lord said to Balaam, “Go with the men, but only the word that I speak to you, that you shall speak.” So Balaam went with the princes of Balak.

…And Balaam said to Balak, “Look, I have come to you! Now, have I any power at all to say anything? The word that God puts in my mouth, that I must speak.”…

(The above account was recorded in Numbers 22.)