Hands For War, Fingers For Battle



Of David. Praise be to the LORD my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle.-Psalm 144:1 (NIV)

My husband told our son to open the first page from an autographed book he brought home from a training much needed for his work. He was excited at the same time, telling us about the significance of this training with him and his co-workers at these trying times. Obviously, he learned so much.

The author, with his stylish, cursive handwriting began with “To a brother…” and ended it with the verse I wrote above… My husband added they were both excited to know the many similarities they had as both had served in the military and to learn that he was also a “brother in Christ” made his heart jump with joy.

“It fits what many does in law enforcement but I see the bottom line,” humbly I reminded him.

“In reality, we battle in this unseen war…And it is indeed God Who helps us with this…”

He silently nodded as he paused for a few bites of the dinner I just warmed up for him.

And as we surrender our hearts to Christ, we are all in this. From being lost sheep, we become soldiers…In these trying times, may we, children of God, use our hands, our fingers to battle the many circumstances surrounding us in persistent prayers…Because the war is real. It lies deep in our hearts. Of when to say yes or no. Of when to know what is true and what is false. Of hating what is evil and fighting for what is good. While at the same time, starting with a “thankful prayer” for the previous mercy given to wretched state. Most of all, of allowing God to help us in this battle for we are not able to win without His help. For it is only His help that makes a sinking vessel float. It is only His help that makes one realize that his or her life is but a shadow. It is only His help that drives one into a realization that self-importance does no one any good. And that’s where our victory comes…From Him and Him alone…

Yes… “Praise be to the Lord, my Rock!!!”


My Tears From "Tears of the Sun"



"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." ~ Edmund Burke (quote also used in the movie “Tears of the Sun” in 2003.
Sony Pictures

“You know me…I don’t cry easily,” I reminded my husband as I started sniffling, though tired from just being roused from my mid afternoon sleep after working the night before.

He was in the middle of watching a movie and at first, I wasn’t paying attention except to read the news from my cell phone. My heart sank as I read that a British citizen was just beheaded by Muslim extremists. Two Americans lost their lives recently in the same fashion by these evil hands.

A loud “No!” was aired from a particular scene that I had no choice but to peek really quick and saw the evil act being done by rebels in Nigeria. They  were raping women. The villagers were also massacred by the said evil group. To make it short, I kept interrupting my husband to give me a short summary, as I put my phone down and tears started swelling in the corner of my eyes. 

“It was only a movie,” I would often tell myself. But this time, I felt the villagers’ struggle. I felt their pain. I felt their loss. But worse, my heart was broken when it realized the sacrifice the American Navy SEAL Team headed by Bruce Willis (as Lt.Waters) had done. Close to the end, Lt. Waters was forced to choose between following orders (which was to extract a US citizen and a mission priest and two nuns) or to save the lives of those villagers facing tortures and death. The US citizen, Dr. Kendricks, (played by Monica Bellucci), had set up a clinic in the jungle, also refused to leave unless she could bring along at least 70 refugees with them. She made it clear. If left behind, they, for sure, would face a certain death. With Lt. Waters’ conscience forcing him to disobey the order to get the citizens and missionaries only, him and his team willingly chose to help the remaining villagers to reach a nearby border town where they all could go for a safe haven. But with that choice came an expected gut-wrenching loss of some of his team members as they were ambushed by pursuing, evil rebels. Eventually, the movie ended where the villagers reached the border and were saved and the SEALs’ help arriving to get them out and retrieve the bodies of the dead soldiers as they bombed those pursuing rebels and killed them all.

It was only a movie…” my thought started reiterating what I would often say. But it didn’t even go there. As my tears flowed and I recalled the many lives lost in the wars of Iraq and Afghanistan. As I recalled the many awaiting families who sent off their loved ones to battle the terrorists in different places of Earth to preserve freedom and help a particular country’s oppressed.

The movie had long been replaced with another and as I returned to reality, I knew...

That we are all still facing this war. As Christians, our true battle is spiritual and we can’t face any without God’s strength and His weapons. War is ugly. But at times, war can be justified and is necessary. To bring aggression, injustice and even genocide to stop is a just cause.

Let’s all pray for our country’s leaders and for God’s true wisdom to prevail in these trying times… 

Deep in my heart, those who were killed but believed in Christ never faced death…They died…in the hands of evil men… yet they lived…Eternally… And as Christians, knowing this faithful promise of His, should enable us to live our lives differently. What can each of us do with the light He imparted in each of our hearts today that can bring change around us? May we be faithful in our prayers as we share what we know about His love and grace…


 He replied: “Watch out that you are not deceived. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and, ‘The time is near.’ Do not follow them. When you hear of wars and uprisings, do not be frightened. These things must happen first, but the end will not come right away.”- Luke 21:8,9 (NIV)



Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. - Ephesians 6:11,12 (NIV)

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. - Ephesians 6:18 (NIV)

 
 

The Drought



But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus--the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God. – Acts 20:24 (NLT)

Then Paul answered, "Why are you weeping and breaking my heart? I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die in Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus." – Acts 21:13 (NIV)

Then each of them was given a white robe, and they were told to wait a little longer, until the full number of their fellow servants, their brothers and sisters, were killed just as they had been. – Revelation 6:11 (NIV)

I haven’t been blogging…For a while…My desire has been as dry as this drought our state has been suffering from. Don’t get me wrong. It doesn’t mean I have strayed away from learning more of God. In fact, since He found me, I know that my very existence and survival doesn’t mean anything if I exclude Him. Each day…

Truth is…my heart is grieving…From all the rampant, devastating news going on all around me. The growing threat of terrorism and now that 9/11 is coming around the corner, I know, like other Americans, most of us are edgy if there’s anything being planned against this beautiful country and its people. My heart knows…the deep need to always look up…and pray…Any moment… At any place… I always find myself whispering… Uttering soft, silent petitions… While driving… While cooking… While sipping my cup of coffee… After closing the door behind my husband each time he leaves for work… For my child… who is not a little boy anymore…  For leaders of this country and of this world… For people… 

History does repeat itself…

Sins then are sins now…

“It’s 7:30 already?” my son asked, interrupting my thoughts…

“Mom, time goes by so fast…” 

“Yup!”

I glanced at the nearby digital numbers glowing from the oven. 

7:30…

In the evening…

Confirming what my son had just spoken…

Clearly, another few seconds have passed by since I turned my head into that direction…

In soft whispers, I found myself lifting up petitions again…



Lord, time is fast. Our lives are indeed short. Like flowers wilting in open fields... May You always lead me and my family to Your truth…Help us Lord with Your wisdom…Your discernment…Give us the courage and the strength to overcome… Each day…I pray that for Your children… That may You always remind us to remember the race we’re in… To help us be aware of the things that we need to put into this place, instead of aiming to get things out of it… For what matters are the things that we don’t see… Thank You Lord… for Your grace, love and mercy… May many more come to know You…the only true God… May they come to realize that the tracks they are making are heading into wrong directions and instead, may Your love and forgiveness help them find the only direction that leads to You… The true drought existing in our land is nothing compared to the drought of souls needing the rain of Your grace…
All posts/composed songs copyright by RCUBEs.



Encouragers

The Attacker (5/15/09)

The sun was just peeking from the Eastern skies. Ephesians 6:12 [37 kb]


Out in the prison’s yard, some huge Sheriff’s buses were illuminated by the soft glow coming from the lights all over from the tall lamp posts. Their engines were turned on, warming up, before the buses would take the inmates to the different courts where they would have their trials.


Orange-uniformed men were lined up in pairs, joined together with handcuffs and chained, forming a long line. They already had their breakfast and had their morning medications prior to going to courts. Some were fidgeting, as they waited to board those buses.


All of a sudden, all hell broke loose! Two men were engaged in a fight, using weapons they made secretly for a while. Deputies called for help on the radio, both for custody back-up and medical staff, as well.


When the air was cleared and the other inmates were secured, one man was down on the floor. He sustained multiple gashes but two of them were deep. One cut was vertically etched from his left ear going down to the jaw line. The other dangerous cut was horizontal on his left neck, close to the jugular vein. Pool of blood dripped all over the floor. Holding his bleeding neck, he was pointing at the other inmate few feet away, being guarded by the other deputies.


The other man being accused was not hurt. There were no lacerations nor any other signs of trauma. He was obviously very agitated as he was being questioned by those deputies, while the medical staff started treating the other man on the floor. They cleaned the wounds and controlled the bleeding. That man was sent to the nearby hospital.


When the investigation was finalized, it turned out to be that the “downed man who was accusing the other inmate” was the attacker and the other one who didn’t have injury was the one attacked. The deputies found out that it was the second attempt to attack the unhurt man. Both attacks on him failed. He was well-prepared after the first attempt on him, that when the second attempt was done, he was able to defend himseld and ended up injuring his attacker severely.


[Source: Life Application Bible]:


We also have an “accuser of the brethren.” Satan and his army of demons are the enemies of God and of everything good.


“Because God’s children are human beings – made of flesh and blood – Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death.” –Hebrews 2:14


Because of what Jesus had done [dying on the cross], we, who live in constant fear of death shouldn’t be afraid anymore. Jesus had freed us from that fear so we can live for Him. When we belong to God, we know that death is only the portal that leads into “eternal life”. [“Thank You Lord!].


Paul warned us, too that we also battle against the evil forces of Satan, who is a vicious fighter. But to be able to withstand their attacks, we must depend on God’s strength and use every piece of His armor. We face an army whose goal is to defeat Christ’s church. When we believe in Christ, they become our enemies. They will try any device to turn us away from the Lord.


Fear not! For God has provided His supernatural power to defeat Satan and his army, through His Holy Spirit within us. So, arm yourselves with God’s armor.


Let us be strong in the Lord's mighty power. Let's put on His whole armor to resist the enemy's attacks: put on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that we are well-prepared. We will need faith in every battle as our shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed by Satan and his army. Let us put on salvation as our helmet, not forgetting the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Let's pray at all times, on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. We must stay alert and be persistent in our prayers for all Christians everywhere. [Ephesians 6:10-18].

Friends