Just before sharing with you the latest update I received from House Of Blessing, Jerusalem, I would like to clear up an unintentional mistake made in my previous Mideast Update. After my introductory comments I inserted an e-mail I received directly from the Epicenter. Due to some unfortunate misunderstanding on my part, I thought the e-mail urgent prayer update for Pastor R**** was written by our Sister Norah in Jerusalem. It actually had originated from the head of H.O.B.’s prayer team, Lois. I also made a few minor corrections in the e-mail itself. Please note that corrections have been made. Thanks!
Now, for today’s update:
MIDEAST UPDATE, 11/29/2014
In Revelation 6:9-11 we find these words:
When He opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held. And they cried with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, until You judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” Then a white robe was given to each of them; and it was said to them that they should rest a little while longer, until both the number of their fellow servants and their brethren, who would be killed as they were, was completed. (NKJV)
Psalm 116:15 tells us: “Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of His saints.” In my weekly call from the Middle East I received both good news and tragic news–which is mostly how it has been since the beginning of this project 2½ years ago.
This week I learned that one of the men taken to the hospital along with Omar after having been shot by ISIS terrorists, succumbed to severe kidney and liver damage. There were also a number of missionaries in both Syria and Iraq that were murdered while sharing the Gospel this last week. For those of us living in relative peaceful and free conditions, it is difficult to fathom the extreme danger the Christians are in in the Middle East. We must keep them in prayer.
As the last update said, Pastor R**** has been in the hospital due to his heart attacks but he was expecting to be out today, Sunday, November 30th. About 150 new students have graduated from their last 45 days of intensive training through House Of Blessing’s School of Ministry. Pastor R**** signed each graduate’s certificate while in the hospital and one of R****’s trustworthy assistants oversaw the actual ceremony at the meeting tent.
There are about 150 more students that have been selected for the next intensive course. There are several hundred more in waiting to take Pastor R****’s course. In speaking with my friend over the phone, he said he was going to take a few days to pray, fast, and commune with his Lord before starting the next class. We have both learned the value of shutting off from as many distractions as best we can for a while in order to spend some quality time alone with the Master. What is accomplished for the Kingdom of God is greatly multiplied when this discipline is followed because God honors this time spent with a greater anointing and measure of the Holy Spirit released to fulfill God’s ultimate purposes.
Great upheaval in the heavenlies is playing out on this earth with great violence. In many places on earth it seems that evil is erupting unchecked. What is righteous and just is scoffed at and ridiculed. Demons of hate are being unleashed in our day as a precursor of what is about to erupt upon this wicked, rebellious planet. There is a hellish bloodlust being evidenced on earth today, unrivaled at any time in mankind’s history except just prior to the great flood of Noah and the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah in Lot’s day. The Christians in the Middle East today are bearing some of the worst persecution in the world. Between now and the time when Jesus the Messiah calls us home, it will only get worse.
I ran across a quote in “A White Stone”, written by Jim and Merry Corbett that I would like to include in this update. It reads:
“Do not fear the giants in the land. The largest and biggest giant in your eyes is simple and small in Mine. The most powerful people with the loudest voices are only a ruptured vessel or stopped heart from being silenced. All is at My control, even though it looks like I have lost control.
I don’t move through worldly, visible power. I don’t move through logic and reason. I move as I see fit for My purposes to be accomplished. My weapons are not and have never been those the world understands. Fire, wind, cold, earth movements cause change and are warnings. Weakness, humility, forgiveness and love are My way of doing much good.
Be sure to see through the plans of man, and remember the plans that I have ordained from the beginning. As they unfold in My perfect timing, do not be surprised by the blindness of this generation–even my people.
Those who have not heard, will not hear. Those who would not see, will not be able to see. Surrender fully to My will and My Word. It is the only safe place to find sure steps in the coming times.
Sometimes it seems that evil overcomes. Not so! In the very worst of times, God’s Will will always be accomplished because He is absolutely in control! In the early church, the Apostle James and Stephen the deacon were martyred very early on. Yet, when Peter was on the list to be killed next after James, God sent an angel to release him from his cell and chains. When Paul and Silas had been beaten half to death and left in stocks for the night, while they were singing their praises to God, God intervened in a big way, sending a great earthquake, and opened the prison gates. All the prisoners found themselves free. God used the opportunity to reach the jailer and his entire family–and likely many of the prisoners! God is always in control. This is just as much the case in our generation, so we must remember this!
As the H.O.B. missionaries have bravely continued sharing the love of Jesus with people who have never heard of such a love, many hundreds more have been reached again this last week. Reports have come in of at least an additional 250 in Iran and 750 or so in the Kurdistan area. But numbers are not what is important as even one soul saved is worth every drop of blood shed on the cross of Christ.
I want to ask you all to please keep these courageous people in your prayers. The financial needs they have every single day is not something they ever tell anyone about. They trust God. The need for more Bibles printed into Arabic and now into Farsi also continues from day to day. We as their “family” have been given the privilege to help. The heavenly rewards are eternal. These folks may not belong to our own “denomination” but do we really think God makes such a distinction? Absolutely NOT! If the Almighty has brought such a ministry to our attention, He does so asking that we not ignore, forget, or minimize their importance to the Kingdom of God. They are our family! We may have never met them in person but we will all meet very soon in the presence of our Lord and Master, Jesus. It is He who has sovereignly intertwined all of our lives at this time in history. We must not underestimate its significance. If we do, we limit the significance God has made available to us. We all reap what we sow. My wife shared a quote with me a few days ago that has meant much to me. I would like to share it with you as well:
“As we live faithfully before God, He will use our obedience for His purposes and imbue our lives with significance far beyond what we could ever imagine.”
Let this encourage you as it has me. This is the way God works…and He is faithful!