Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Scriptures of Encouragement ~ An AHA Moment!

God gave me an AHA moment in Sunday School this past week. 

Let's look at Judges 6:11-13. "Now the Angel of the Lord came and sat under the terebinth tree which was in Ophrah...while his son Gideon threshed wheat in the winepress, in order to hide it from the Midianites. And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him, and said to him, "The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!" Gideon said to Him, 'O my lord, if the Lord is with us, why then has all this happened to us?...'"

Notice verse 11: "The Angel of the Lord came and sat under the terebinth tree..." 

The Lord sat under the tree watching Gideon work like crazy in his own strength trying to solve the problem of his enemies, the Midianites. He sat there! I wonder how long the Lord sat and watched His child before He intervened. How often does He come near and watch us, waiting for us to acknowledge His Presence and power?

The Angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon in verse 12 and said, "The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!" Do you suppose the Lord heard Gideon's cries for help or do you suppose the Lord had mercy on His fearful child and responded before Gideon turned to Him? Something tells me Gideon had not turned to the Lord before this. I believe this is an example of God's grace and mercy. Verse 13 gives us the answer: "Gideon said to Him, 'O my lord, if the Lord is with us, why then has all this happened to us?..."

Can anyone besides me hear your own voice saying the same thing?!

In the midst of our panic, God is right there. Waiting. Watching. Listening. I have learned that "the eyes of the Lord roam to and fro across the earth seeking those who need to be strengthened" (2 Chronicles 16:9).

But we have to choose to let go of the reins. We must choose to open our eyes to see the Lord our God in our midst, waiting for us to let go and trust Him.

I believe the Lord watched Gideon's frenzy and then encouraged him with words from a heavenly perspective, "You mighty man of valor!" (Notice the exclamation point - God's, not mine.) God, the Father, believes in us. He calls us by His Name.

But He also wants us to call Him by His Name.


Father, forgive us for the times we try to handle things in our own strength when You are right there waiting and watching, hoping that we will come to our senses and call on You. Thank You for Your faithfulness. You are an awesome God and we love You so much.
If you have received Morning Glory via email, please visit the Morning Glory page to be blessed in song by Selah as they sing, "One Thing I Know". Sweet blessings to you!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Scriptures of Spiritual Warfare ~ Face to Face With the Adversary

The spinning blue strobe lights broke through the calm of the morning. A hastened siren blurted out one solid yowl, just enough to let the driver know she had one choice, and that was to pull over.

"Pull over?" she said to no one in particular. "That's all I need! I don't have time to pull over." But, reluctantly, pull over she did.

Her blonde hair was disheveled. She flicked it repeatedly over her shoulder as her fingers combed through her bag to retrieve a driver's license. License found. Thank You, Lord. Freshly painted red nails nervously clicked and tapped the steering wheel. Hurry Mister! Please, hurry!

The officer approached as the frazzled woman rolled down her window. Before he could say a word, the woman blurted out, "Sir, I don't think I was doing anything wrong! Why did you stop me?"

"Well, Ma'am, you look like you're mighty angry about something.

"Angry? Yessir, I'm angry! I'm angry at Satan for trying to disrupt this day God has made just for me! I'm getting married in a few hours and you have no idea how he has tried to come against me. I've been rebuking him in the Name of my Jesus!"

The officer took about five steps backwards. Slowly. "And another thing," the lady said, "God has brought me this far and I am not about to let the devil have his way with me! I am washed in the Blood of Jesus!"

"Uh, Ma'am, I..."

"God has given me the perfect man and He has restored our broken lives!" she continued. "I WILL not let Satan have this victory!"

"Yes, Ma'am," he surrendered.  "But, please do me a favor and calm down."

Apparently, the officer was no match for this little lady-warrior.

Paul told the Church at Ephesus that, "We do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places."
 ~ Ephesians 6:12

Jesus told His disciples in Luke 10:19, "Behold, I give you the authority...over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you."

James 4:7 reads, "Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you."

Resist. The Greek word for resist is anthistemi (anth-us-tay-mee) and means - are you ready? - it means to vigorously oppose, bravely resist, stand face-to-face against an adversary, stand your ground.

And that is exactly what my friend Joy was doing in the true story above. Joy knows who she is in Christ. She is also well acquainted with our adversary, Satan. When Joy rebukes the devil, SHE REBUKES THE DEVIL! She enters into spiritual WARfare.

And there ain't nothin' prim and proper about spiritual warfare. 

It is intentional. 
It is done with God-given authority.
And it is done as if your life depends upon it.

Sweet child of God, YOU are somebody in God's Kingdom. You have been bought with the precious Blood of Jesus Christ, and where the Blood is, Satan has no authority. Resist him and he must flee. Amen?


If you received Morning Glory via email, please visit the Morning Glory  page if you want to GO TO CHURCH! Hezekiah Walker will get your body swayin', your hands clappin' and your feet movin' as he sings "Faithful is Our God". Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Scriptures of Comfort ~ The Soothing Touch of God

My eyes were swollen from crying. Satan's oppression was fierce, piercing my heart with tremors of fear and defeat. Honestly, at times I could scarcely breathe. It was horrible.

As I lay on the couch, I kept calling on the Name of Jesus. I pictured Him as my strong tower. I saw myself running to Him, but tripping and falling over rugged stones. Tears blinded me. Fear defeated me. My spirit opened and closed like the mouth of a baby bird, begging for Living Water.

I knew I needed help.

Facebook came to mind, but could I put my pride aside and ask my friends for help? Yes, I could. It took several prayers for courage, but I knew I needed my Christian family. I posted, "When my heart is overwhelmed, lead me to the Rock that is higher than I...that is higher than I. Prayers please."

Friends responded immediately with prayers and sweet words of encouragement. Their presence led me to His Presence. Although I had not revealed my source of panic, the Spirit of God opened their eyes to see. Chicken and potatoes came in. Gas money came in. Wood for the woodstove was provided along with money for rent. The chains of depression gripping my husband due to false accusations and unemployment broke in two, setting him free. My Mighty God reached down from heaven and set me high upon the Rock, high above my enemies and gave me peace.

Exodus 33:14 reads, "And He [God] said, 'My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.'"

The Hebrew term for "give rest" is nu'ach (noo-ahch) and means "To rest, settle down, to be soothed or quieted; to be secure; to be still; to dwell peacefully."

There is nothing quite like the soothing touch of our Daddy God.

Do you need Him today? Are you experiencing panic? Fear? Doubt? Are you stumbling on obstacles as you run to Him? Your brothers and sisters in Christ are standing by to pray for you, to under-gird you and to give you Jesus. Please don't let pride stand in your way. We need one another.

Allow them to lead you to your Prince of Peace. Jesus.

Father God, Your love is amazing. Thank You for Your faithfulness and Your grace that flows like a river. I lift up my friends to You who feel their grip on Your hand slipping. Grab hold of them, Jesus. Let them know, without a doubt, that You are near. I ask that You meet their needs in mighty and tangible ways. Wrap them in a soothing blanket of Your love. Thank You Lord. We love You.
My precious reader, if you need specific, personal prayer, please feel free to contact me at nan@jubilantlight.com. I would be honored to lift you before the throne of grace.
It's just about that time! Christmas is around the corner. If you are looking for a Christian speaker for your Christmas events, I would love for you to consider me. Please visit my website at www.jubilantlight.com to gain further information. I travel from Western North Carolina. Thank you.
If you received Morning Glory via email, please visit the Morning Glory page. Brian Doerksen will give you strength for the journey with his song, "Enter the Rest of God".

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Scriptures of Encouragement ~ In Your Unrest, Behold My Calm

"O soul, are you weary and troubled? No light in the darkness you see?
There's light for a look at the Savior, And life more abundant and free!

"Turn your eyes upon Jesus, Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim
In the light of His glory and grace." ~ Helen H. Lemmel

My darlin', through the pages of God Calling, the Lord would say to you and to me:

"Turn your eyes to behold Me. Look away from sordid surroundings, from lack of beauty, from the imperfections in yourselves and those around you. Then you who have the Faith-Vision will see all you could and do desire in Me.

"In your unrest behold My calm, My rest. In your impatience, My unfailing patience. In your lack and limitation, My perfection.

"Looking at Me you will grow like Me, until men say to you, too, that you have been with Jesus."*

Father God, Open our eyes to see Your face. Open our hearts to seek Your face and in the seeking, finding and in the finding, knowing - knowing that You hold us in the palm of Your hand. We are loved by an awesome God. Thank You for that knowledge Lord. Bless Your holy Name!

*A.J. Russell, God Calling (New York: Dodd, Mead & Company, 1945), 199. 

If you received Morning Glory via email, please visit the Morning Glory  page to make your time with Jesus complete. You have an opportunity to worship along with Michael W. Smith as he sings, "Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus".

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Scriptures of Encouragement ~ The Fierce Love of the Father

The young woman crumpled to her knees before the cross - its shadow draping her pain and permeating the empty sanctuary with its presence. Her shoulders heaved with sorrow. Fear and anguish rattled her brain with thoughts of the unthinkable.  Her hopes were dashed. Dreams teased her from a distance, mocking her determination to persevere. With a heart literally ripping in two, this precious daughter of the King cried out, "GOD! NO MORE! No more....I can take no more."

Her voice quietly slipped away.

A Holy Presence filled the sanctuary, cradling the woman in the warm light of God's love. The light was not visible to the naked eye, but it was there. Oh, yes. It was there. The dark crevices lurking in her heart were set ablaze with the Spirit of God. His Living Water flowed freely, seeping deep into the broken places. She rested beneath the shadow of His Wing.

And then the Spirit of God whispered to His Child, My daughter, You are Mine. I am with you. I will never leave you, nor forsake you. Why do you fear? Is there anything too difficult for me? Your dreams are My dreams - My purposes - for you. I have spoken these things to your heart and I will watch over My word to perform it. Do not give up. Do not give in to the lies of the enemy. Stand strong in My love. Stand strong in My grace. Be not ashamed, for you are Mine, the workmanship of My hands. It is I that orchestrates the events in your life. Trust Me. Trust Me and find Me faithful.

The young woman breathed deeply. Peace, that only moments earlier eluded her, now settled upon her troubled soul like a soothing blanket. She still did not know what the future would bring, but she remembered what her momma told her, "I don't know what tomorrow holds, but I know the One who holds tomorrow."

The woman rose. Taking the hand of her Father God, she stepped out into the sunlight of a new day - a day born of travail, but covered in grace and protected by the fierce love of the Most High God.

Beloved, is your spirit wracked with pain? Are fears of the future pummeling you?  Is the cry of your heart beating a hole in your chest? God, your Father, is yearning to hold you and wipe your tears. He only needs an invitation. Won't you run to Him today? Kneel before Him in honest dialogue. Give Him your burdens, your pain. 

You, dear one, are covered in grace and protected by the fierce love of the Most High God. Do not walk in fear. Your Daddy is holding your hand.

"For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him." ~ 2 Chronicles 16:9 

If this message has encouraged you today, would you please take a moment and share it with your friends? I would appreciate it so much. Also, if you haven't already subscribed, please do so. You will receive Morning Glory every Tuesday and Thursday mornings in your inbox - FREE! Just type your email address in the subscribe button at the top right of my blog and click submit. Thank you!
If you received Morning Glory via email, please visit the Morning Glory page. I found a new song (at least to me) by Kari Jobe titled, "I'm in Love With You". You will be blessed beyond measure as you listen and worship the Lord.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Scriptures of Encouragement ~ Breathe on Me, Breath of God

I rocked on the front porch surrounded by the crisp air of dusk. Leaves of gold and crimson danced in the gentle breeze. A songbird sang a melody of praise as, together, we watched the sky dissolve into shades of magenta. I sensed God's sweet Presence.

I settled back in the swing and tugged on my jacket, making it snug beneath my chin. Sitting in the quiet, I thought about the bible study I had been preparing for the ladies at our precious church. I was almost mesmerized by the gentle moments, lost in thought, safe in my Father's arms.

And then He opened my eyes to see something beautiful.

I want to take you back to Genesis 2:7 - back to the very beginning of mankind: "And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living being."

In the verse just above this (verse 6) we are told that a mist came up from the earth and watered the face of the ground. That means the "dust" was moist and pliable, kind of like clay would be. Do you remember the words of Isaiah? "But now, O Lord, You are our Father; We are the clay, and You our potter..."(64:8). I want you to travel back to the Garden with me. God, the Potter, scooped up the clay and, very meticulously, molded, shaped and formed it into the perfect vessel to receive His Spirit. The clay responded to the warmth of His hands. Slowly, the shape of a man emerged. But, it was only a shell of a man.

Now, here's the good part - the part God opened my eyes to see.

Imagine our great God bending over His creation and tenderly cupping Adam's face in His hands. Very gently our Father breathed into Adam. One breath. Two breaths. Perhaps God leaned back to observe. Then another breath. This time Adam's chest rose and fell in rhythm to His Father's love. He was alive with the Spirit of God.

Can you feel the tenderness? The love? The gentle care?

Now, dear One, think back on your moment of salvation - the moment your eyes were opened to see the Lord's face - the moment your heart was awakened to receive His love. You and I had been but a shell of a person. Life had no meaning - no purpose. Many of us lived without hope, a mere puppet in the enemy's hands of destruction. And then God came near. He sweetly cupped our face in His hands. Tilting our head back, He looked long and lovingly into our eyes, and then He breathed. God, the Father, breathed the Breath of Life into our weary souls. His strong and mighty Spirit permeated ours, filling us with new life. New hope. New joy.

Could there be anything greater than the Father's love?

Father God, My heart is burdened for my friends that need a fresh touch from You. Breathe on them, Lord. Remind them of Your great love, Your mercy. Pour out Your grace on them - let it rain, Lord. Let Your grace rain down upon them to strengthen and encourage. Fill them with joy anew, for it is Your joy that gives us strength. As my friends feel Your breath, let their spirit skip like a newborn calf - fully free. Thank You Father. We love You and we give You praise.
Would you like for me to pray with you about something specific? Please feel free to contact me at nan@jubilantlight.com. I would be honored to stand with you before His throne of grace.
If you received Morning Glory via email, please visit the Morning Glory page to be reminded of who you are as Kathryn Scott sings, "Child of God".

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Scriptures of Encouragement ~ His Grace Will Amaze You

Several years ago I stood at the choir door waiting to enter the choir loft. The sanctuary was animated with sounds of happiness and greetings. Our church was alive with the Spirit of God and His goodness.

Let's just say, the enemy wasn't too pleased.

My place in the choir line was behind a member of the congregation who was not happy with the recent church growth. As I was hugging a friend and laughing, Ruth* suddenly turned around and snarled, "Shhh! You are too loud!" Her softly wrinkled face was contorted with pure hatred. I stood stunned. Church had not begun. No one was being disrespectful or irreverent. We were merely celebrating the Lord. Ruth's venom gushed forth and sprayed me with the stench of evil. "Lord," I prayed, "Help me. What do I do? Defend me Lord." I knew this woman wanted us removed from the pastorate. I also knew that she was a bitter old soul.

I could feel God's Spirit rising up within me. In His mercy, God poured out His grace and gave me the courage to face my foe with His love. I extended my arms and gave Ruth a hug. I gently reminded her that the people were excited to worship God. Whoops. Big mistake. More poison sprayed my face, " Well, this is the Lord's house and everyone is too noisy. Especially you!"

The vicious words cut me deep. My eyes welled up with tears, my hands began to shake. "Father, help me," I prayed. With all the graciousness I could muster I said, "Ruth, I'm so sorry you are offended."

"Well, you should know better!" she said.

Within moments, we made our way into the choir loft. I smiled at the congregation, but on the inside I was a mess. "Father, help me forgive her. Please show me what to do." During the greeting time I again reached out to Ruth with God's love. This time the venom was gone. Just as quickly as the attack had begun, the evil had slithered away.

Are you, my reader, thinking, "Man, what a goody-two-shoes? I would've let her have it with both barrels!" Well...here's the thing...There was a time when I would have let her have it too. But, God's been working on me.

2 Corinthians 3:18 reads, "But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a  mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord."

...are being transformed into the same image...

What image? The image of Christ Jesus. As we seek the Lord - as we behold His glory - the Word tells us that we will begin to reflect that which we behold - HIM! Jesus.

God gave me the grace to reflect His Son that day. The transformation did not happen overnight and it is far from complete, but I have made a determination in my heart that I want to represent Jesus to a hurting world. Yes, Ruth was spewing poisonous words all over me, but the source of the poison was a root of bitterness deep within her, caused by past hurts and disappointments. Only Jesus could heal and deliver her. I was merely a vessel for God to pour out His grace and love on this hurting woman. God's grace diffused the venom and planted seeds of righteousness in her spirit.

Have you, too, heard the call to be like Jesus? You will find that His grace is sufficient and He will give you the wings of eagles to rise above the difficulty.

I encourage you: stand still and experience the goodness and grace of God in your trying circumstances.

His grace will amaze you.

Father, God, it is so hard to love the difficult people, but yet, You call us to do just that. I am reminded that it is not by might, nor by power, but by Your Spirit. Lord, show Yourself strong in our lives. Help us to lift Your banner high, to reflect Your glory to those around us. Lord, help us to be more like Jesus. Thank You Lord. Thank You for Your grace in trying circumstances. We love you Lord.
It's time to plan Christmas events for your ladies. I would love to share God's goodness and Presence with them. I travel from the mountains of NC (Ashe County). If you are interested, please visit my website, www.jubilantlight.com or you may contact me directly at nan@jubilantlight.com. Thank you for your prayerful consideration.
If you received Morning Glory via email, please visit the Morning Glory page to worship with Fernando Ortega as he sings, "Lord, I Want to Be Like Jesus". What a beautiful and powerful prayer-song. Sweet blessings to  you!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Scriptures of Encouragement ~ Need a Good Laugh?

I'm in need of some laughter. How about you? There is something about a good ol' belly laugh that makes everything seem better. Not the dignified ha-has. I'm talking about the rolling in the floor, tear-dripping, face-hurtin' guffaws that affects everyone in its path. You know, the kind that makes everyone else laugh even though they have no idea what is so funny!

Nehemiah encouraged the children of God, "Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength"  (Nehemiah 8:10). This was a man and a people who had every reason to be overwhelmed. They had  been brought back from captivity and had, under the leadership of Nehemiah, rebuilt the wall surrounding Jerusalem. During the wall-building time, God's people overcame laziness, mockery, conspiracy and threats of physical attack. But, by God's grace, they endured and completed the wall. Now that the wall was secure, God began to restore the people to Himself. Nehemiah called for an assembly. The Word of God was read to them - for hours. Priests walked among the thousands of people gathered and helped them understand the Scriptures (remember, they had been held captive for years and could not celebrate their Jewish faith.) And the people wept. Just imagine how long it had been since they had heard the sweet Word of God. God's Spirit stirred within them. I believe, when confronted with the Word of God, the people recognized their sinful hearts - those things that separated them from a Holy God - and they wept.

But remember, we love a merciful God.

Nehemiah told them, "Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength."

The Joy of the Lord!! JOY! Unadulterated hope and security that is not contingent on circumstances. JOY in the knowledge that an awesome God loves us and hides us beneath the shadow of His wing. JOY that overflows from the wellspring of life breathed into us by the Breath of God.


Are you ready to feel some joy with a good laugh? It will take a few minutes, but I promise you it will be well worth your time. Please promise me that you will watch, ok? Laughter is good for the soul.

First video: My friend, Vonda Skelton, gives a literal translation to the vivid description of Solomon's Beloved found in Song of Solomon. She's gonna crack you up!

And the second video to bring you joy is Mark Lowry's, "Mama's Had Enough!" Too funny!

There. Now don't you feel better?

Enjoy the Lord today. Celebrate His Word. Rejoice in His goodness. And never forget...He loves you with an everlasting love. YOU are the apple of His eye.
If you received Morning Glory via email, please go to the Morning Glory page for some great belly laughs with videos featuring Vonda Skelton and Mark Lowry. You'll be glad you did. I promise.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Scriptures of Israel ~ Shalom Jerusalem

I'm not quite sure why, but I feel led to share my heart with you concerning Israel. Anyone that knows me, knows that I love Israel and my Jewish brothers and sisters - I have for many years. As I study the Scriptures, I find Jesus throughout the Old Testament. I know that the covenant I share with God is the same covenant made with Abraham, renewed through Moses, carried out through the Blood of Jesus. It is the same covenant that will lift me up into the heavenlies one day and allow me to sing praises around the throne of God for all of eternity.

As a Believer in Christ Jesus, it is the same covenant of which you partake.

In the book of Romans, Paul exhorts the church at Rome, which was primarily Christian Gentiles, to understand the relationship between Jews and Gentiles in God's overall plan of redemption:

"If some of the branches have been broken off, and you, though a wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others, and now share in the nourishing sap from the olive root, do not boast over those branches. If you do, consider this: You do not support the root, but the root supports you." ~ Romans 11:17,18, NIV

Precious reader, WE are the wild olive shoot that has been grafted in. The root Paul refers to is Jewish, tracing all the way back to the Abrahamic covenant made in Genesis 17:1 & 7: "I am Almighty God; walk before Me and be blameless...And I will establish My covenant between me and you and your descendants after you in their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and your descendants after you."

John 4:22 reads, "...we worship what we do now, for salvation is from the Jews."

Israel needs our prayers. Desperately. Each day, rocket mortars speed through the skies on their deadly course, aimed at the children of God. Every. Day. An Iranian dictator is within months of completing a nuclear bomb that, from the moment of conception, was created for the destruction of Israel. Israel is standing alone in a den of enemies that are circling...circling...circling, ready to annihilate the people of the One True God.

It must not be.

As David cried out in Psalm 122:6-8, I cry out to you: "Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: May those who love you be secure. May there be peace within your walls and security within your citadels. For the sake of my brothers and friends, I will say, 'Peace be within you.'"

For the sake of my brothers and friends...Indeed.

Shalu Shalom Yerushayalim!
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem...

Father God, thank You for Your perfect plan of salvation - Your perfect plan that unites us with You, the plan that makes a way for you to dwell with Your people as in days of old. I think back to the Garden of Eden when You walked with Adam and Eve. You talked with them, You had rich  fellowship with them. And then sin entered and You, a Holy God, could no longer be with Your children. Lord, how Your heart must have been broken. But You never gave up. Thank You for that. I'm so thankful that You found a righteous man named Abram whom You could trust to be obedient and faithful. Lord, all through the centuries, You have woven Your righteous thread through Israel. Father God, You ARE the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Through their blood lines came the most precious Blood of all, the blood of the Lamb of God, Jesus. Sweet Jesus. Lord, open our eyes to see Your people Israel. Open our hearts to love them and pray for them and to understand that they are our brothers and sisters. Please help us understand this Lord. Show us how we can support them. I ask that You surround Israel with Your warring angels to keep Your people safe. Take away their fear. Give them favor in the eyes of other nations, especially America. Forgive us for turning our backs on them. And Lord, let Your children know Your Presence in tangible ways as they strive to be a beacon of Light in the midst of their enemies. Thank You Father. We praise Your Holy Name!
If you received Morning Glory via email, you won't want to miss the music video today. It is a Jewish song, "Shalom Jerusalem" by Paul Wilborn. There are beautiful scenes of Jerusalem throughout the video and the song will take you before God's throne. Hurry on over to the Morning Glory page. Sweet blessings to you!