Even in the darkest storms of life, we can maneuver through emotional upheaval and make our place at His “throne of Grace.”
Even in the darkest storms of life, we can maneuver through emotional upheaval and make our place at His “throne of Grace.”
I’m hidden for a short while…again.
Something I’ve learned over the years about my walk with the Lord is that His special offer to meet with Him never expires, and the very purpose for which He has created me is fulfilled only through seasons of living Hidden in Him.
There’s a favorite room in the rambling old farm house that my husband and I call home. I study and write in that room, but what I especially enjoy in that quiet space is being with the One who loves with the purest and deepest of loves.
After five weeks of traveling and ministry, I’m glad for the Lord’s invitation to come aside to be with Him. My soul and tired body need a hidden life; being with Him will rejuvenate both.
Coming aside from daily routines to meet with the Lord is the way to a closer relationship with Him.
Do you understand what I’m talking about here? I haven’t traveled to a remote location to be cloistered away with the Lord. I’m not wearing a nun habit. It’s not that I spend day after day hidden in my room away from earthly activities, and hour after hour deep in prayer. Please, don’t misunderstand.
There are people who are called to a life like that, but that’s not what I’m talking to you about. What I’m sharing with you here is that there is a way to a deeper Christian walk and union with the Lord. In more than two decades of following Jesus, I’ve found that what’s needed for this is time alone with Jesus. Daily. It’s that simple.
This isn’t a religious requirement.
For many people, being alone with the Lord to pray, worship, or to sit quietly in His Presence is the best part of each day. This is what I’ve found. Prayer is not a religious requirement. It’s an invitation to walk through the door that God has opened to you. That door leads to Him.
If you have decided to step aside for a little while, to be in a hidden place with the Lord, distractions will nip at your heels.
This nearly always happens to me. Just as I’m headed to my favorite place, I remember that I promised to return a phone call, or that I didn’t finish the last article, and I think that doing so will take just a few minutes of my time.
What do you imagine happens? When I submit to these distractions, more time is consumed than I had anticipated and the block of time that I had is gone.
Prayer is the one thing that will reveal to you the things in your life that have a hold on you.
You can hide away in a cabin in the middle of a forest, at the top of a hill, where your cell phone and computer won’t work and still be restless and distracted. That restlessness is not from the Lord. He’s the God of peace, not of constant mental and physical activity.
Jesus said, when you pray, go into your room and shut the door. Pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly”–Matt. 6:6
In Matthew 6:6, we find Jesus’ instructions concerning prayer. When you pray, go into your room and shut the door. We shut the door to close out distractions, then we Pray to our Father who is in the secret place; and our Father who sees in secret will reward us openly.
There may be a battle to get to the “Secret Place,” that place where you’re mentally and emotionally present with the Lord. Whatever needs to be overcome to get there, He’s worth it. Push through. Turn off your phone. Tell your family that you’re taking a little rest. Close your door. You need to be with Him.
When you’re in your room behind your closed door, that hidden place will reveal to you the things in your life that have a hold of you. You can be in the middle of worship and suddenly a thought crosses your mind of something you’d like to do, need to do, must do. Those things that pop up in your thoughts are trying to dominate your life. My friends, what you don’t rule will rule over you. Be in dominion.
Not everyone will understand and not everyone walking on the journey with you today will continue on the journey with you tomorrow.
The “Secret Place” is a prayer closet built for two–you and the Lord. It’s not my intention to shock you, but some of you will be surprised to learn that there aren’t crowds of people knocking down the door to get in.
Following Christ and particularly coming aside from a busy life to be with Him in prayer is counter-cultural, which means that it’s not appealing to the masses, but it’s greatly valued by the Lord.
Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of our faith…
The people you know may not be interested in following Christ to the extent that you are. Not everyone will understand your journey, and those walking on your journey with you today might take a different course tomorrow, but you are not alone.
We are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses. Throughout the ages, men and women have found the way to the Secret Place to meet with the Lord, these include: Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Caleb, Isaiah, Elijah, Daniel, Deborah, Samuel, David, Esther, Zechariah and Elizabeth, Anna, Mary (the sister of Martha), John the Baptist, Priscilla, John the Apostle and Paul.
I’m in a hidden place for a little while. This means that I’ve stepped aside in the midst of a very full and busy life to be with the One who loves with perfection. Not everyone understands this journey and that’s okay.
In more than 15 years of serving the Lord, my team and I have witnessed hundreds of men and women testify of total freedom from chronic physical conditions.
At an annual event held each October in Southern Oregon, Glorious Rising, several people shared their testimonies of a wonderful gift that the Lord gave to them — the gift of being instantly healed of chronic illness.
The short video showing their testimonies is here to encourage you. What you will see and hear in the video are several women and one gentleman who were healed one or more years ago during prayer.
It’s not the prayer that healed them, nor is it the person who prayed, but it is in the Name of Jesus that they were each healed. To Him belongs all the praise and thanks.
Every time I’ve set aside early morning time to seek the Lord, I belly flop. My eyes become heavy with sleep, my mind wanders, and my heart feels guilty for not being more holy like the rest of everyone who knows anything about being a Christian.
No fewer than a dozen times over the years, I’ve heard preachers and teachers of the Word say that we prioritize our lives based upon whatever is most important to us. They say that if Jesus is number 1, then this will be evident by how we begin every day. He should be first in the morning before we do anything else, they add, because the Bible tells us so.
Somehow the Priority Principle has never jelled in my mold. I want it to. My morning routine involves prayer, but I wait until later in the day for that deeper experience with Jesus that I’ve grown to cherish.
In my world, most everyday is filled with unending tasks and responsibilities—Believe me! Sometimes the “to do” list is incomprehensible. In addition to work and the ministry, there are always household chores, and friendship and family ties that keep me on my toes.
Such a busy life! I’m chasing after my shadow as I try to catch up with myself.
Think with me for a second; Is Jesus less important to me than He is to you if you begin your morning with your personal devotion time, but I postpone that aspect of my walk with Jesus until after I’ve tackled a project that weighs on my mind?
You see, not only do I become very sleepy while in early morning prayer, but the way I’m wired may be different than the way you’re wired. Until I clear my schedule of urgent matters—a report, for instance, that must be delivered today to my local judge and to all of the legal parties to a particular court case—it’s almost impossible for me to focus my entire heart on the Lord. But once I complete the projects for which others depend upon me, I’m more able to enter into “The Secret Place” of His Presence.
Keeping Jesus a priority takes a little doing in a busy life, but I can’t imagine a day without being with Him. In fact, right now as I share this with you, my heart is stirred with desire for Him. So, I’ll sign off now and hurry to complete that court report responsibility, and then I’ll have an entire afternoon to be with the Lord.
Jesus is without question my priority, and I hope He is number 1 in your life, too.
Keep going after God.
Tonight, I won’t be talking about exercise. Don’t worry! I’m not slacking; each time I rise from my chair, for the first ten steps or so I walk as though my legs are strapped to boards. My sore thigh and abdominal muscles testify that I’ve worked them pretty hard.
Neither Vern nor I stretched out enough after Faithful Workout’s killer leg and abdominal routine that we whole-heartedly participated in Saturday evening. And now, we’re paying the price for our oversight and learning a good lesson–after putting them through their paces, muscles need some T.L.C.
There’s something of greater importance on my heart than exercise and nutrition that I want to talk with you about.
Many years ago, I was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, possibly the result of the Epstein Barr virus of which I tested positive.
For five years, my energy level was so low that a simple activity like brushing my teeth drained the little strength that I had. During that season, I visited doctors, a nutritionist, and I spent hundreds of dollars on health products.
Eventually, I found a nutritional supplement that alleviated my suffering. But if I stopped taking it, my energy level did a nosedive into a dark and scary pit.
I wish I could describe the intense joy that I experienced on the day when the Chronic Fatigue suddenly vanished. It was as if someone gave me a second chance at living.
Nutrition, lots of good water, exercise, some sunshine, and rest were beneficial, but these things didn’t cure me.
How did I get well? My miracle came from the Lord as a direct answer to prayer.
If you have chronic poor health and have done all that you can to find a cure, I want you to be encouraged. Miracles happen for other people, and they can happen to you.
Put your trust in the Lord and pray. A person who learns how to pray and to rest in the knowledge that God hears prayer is a person who has learned to be without fear.
Fear, anxiety, and worry–typical conditions of modern society–contribute to disease. At the opposite end of the spectrum is faith. Trusting in God contributes to improved quality of living, and is beneficial for this life and for the one to come (1 Timothy 4:8).
So, as we each pursue better health, let’s remember to keep going after God.
Wishing you all the best,
Yikes! My doctor gave me the news I had hoped to never hear. He said I have sticky-icky cholesterol [the LDL kind] in my blood. Lab results indicate that my cholesterol numbers are more like what you’d expect from someone who lives on fried foods and tons of donuts, and other delicious things soaked with unhealthy fats. Fortunately, I’m not a big fan of those kinds of foods.
How did I end up with too much LDL then? Heredity. My mother had high cholesterol, as did her dad. As far as I know, no-one on her side of the family had heart disease. This makes me question the LDL panic that has swept our nation over the last decade, and whether or not it’s the true culprit behind hardening of the arteries and coronary disorders.
Like most every doctor on the planet with a patient who has high LDL, mine recommended that I take a cholesterol lowering medication. I respect his counsel and expertise, but I also know that there are alternatives to many prescription drugs.
In pursuit of answers, I read reports and study results concerning cholesterol’s link to heart disease and strokes. As it turned out, finding the truth was a bit like attending a political party debate where both sides know that they are right, and everyone listening to them wonders who to believe.
To my total chagrin, the heart disease villain hides behind mounds of reports and studies, theories and healthcare philosophies. In comparison, a “natural” treatment was easy to pinpoint. At least, there’s consensus among healthcare practitioners about what works and what doesn’t work.
Not wanting to keep such a good thing to myself, I’m taking the information I gathered from hours of tedious reading and summarizing it into something that I hope you will find helpful and not boring.
Each of the alternatives on here are shown in multiple studies to build heart health and get those cholesterol numbers to a range that keeps doctors smiling. These “natural remedies” may not work for everyone, but they work for a lot of people. This being the case, I’m giving them a try. For some accountability, I’ll write again to let you know how it’s going. And, who knows, maybe this will encourage you in your pursuit of improved health.
There are literally thousands of articles, and dozens of studies that have been conducted on this whole topic of cholesterol management and treatment alternatives. From the pages and pages of material that I read, I’ve narrowed the mountain of information down to five important steps that can significantly contribute to healthy cholesterol, strong hearts and arteries. Here they are: 1. The mineral Magnesium, preferably as Magnesium Taurate. 2. A low sugar and starch free lifestyle. 3. Low amounts of saturated fats. 4. Moderate exercise, thirty-minutes a day, 6x/week. 5. Krill oil supplement
Over the next couple of weeks, I’ll begin implementing each of these 5 steps. I think the hardest ones for me will be consistently exercising and keeping sugars to a minimum. Eliminating starches might be a bit tricky, also because my husband likes his potatoes and pasta.
Here’s a little more information from the studies and reports:
Moderate activity, such as fast walking, jogging, dancing or aerobics greatly reduces LDL and improves HDL cholesterol (the good kind).
To sum it up, Magnesium and Krill oil are excellent supplements for coronary and heart health. When combined with exercise and a low sugar, low saturated fat meal plan [notice I didn’t say diet], my LDL cholesterol should drop to healthy levels.
The Nitty Gritty of Statins: they are produced by pharmaceuticals and are cholesterol lowering medications. Something that I found interesting is that Red Yeast Rice is a natural low dose statin and is the base ingredient in two popular statin drugs.
While the good news is that statins work for most everyone; the bad news is that prescription medications containing statins and Red Yeast Rice deplete the body’s natural CoQ10, a vital nutrient for healthy brain and heart health. For this reason, many health professionals recommend that those who take cholesterol lowering medications and those who take Red Yeast Rice also take a CoQ10 supplement.
Where Spirituality Fits in all of This: When I first heard about my lab results, I was discouraged, but later I was encouraged while remembering a miracle that I witnessed a number of years ago. While ministering in Northern California, a gentleman in the congregation came forward to receive prayer for his high cholesterol. In answer to prayer, the Lord did a miracle for him. Days later, his wife told me that he no longer has high cholesterol and he was even able to go off of his medication. For this I’m especially grateful.
Faith and prayer are essential for wholeness. In over 15 years experience as a minister, my team and I have witnessed hundreds of people testify of complete relief from all sorts of symptoms following prayer. Seeing men and women who had suffered with chronic conditions instantly free through God’s power is one of the greatest joys of my life.
It’s so easy to over focus on working hard and doing all the “right” things to be healthy, but forget that our relationship with God has to be a priority if we are going to be whole and happy individuals. So, I’m closing this article with one final word of encouragement.
Pray daily. Prayer is communication with God, the Creator. It won’t do you any good to worry about the big and little things in life; roll them over onto the Lord and leave them there. He loves you with a love that is so huge as to be immeasurable.
And now for that boring disclaimer that is at the end of every health related article. Of course, I’m not a health care professional, and this little bit of writing is not a health claim, a health cure, or a health prescription. If you choose to go off of statins, you might want to see if your doctor will work with you. The only prescription that I will give is one for life—have faith in God and pray for all needs.