About Belinda Williams

Thursday, January 29, 2015

The Convenient Prayer

As we "do" life, we develop a routine for daily activities.  Things like the route we take to work, exercise plans and even the times we take our meals become habitual.  We have established a pattern of activities (purposely or not) that guide us from day to day - week to week.  There's nothing wrong with routine, schedule or habits.  They can provide order to an overburdened life.  The problem occurs when something doesn't fit into our normal routine.  Emergencies, surprises and the unexpected can upset our apple cart of normalcy.  Yet these very things also seem to get our attention in ways that "routine" never does.

It's the same with our walk with the Lord.  After our initial salvation, many of us fall into a routine of faith.  This routine may include our times of prayer, study, service attendance and fellowship.  We are content with our patterns.  We are thrilled and wear as a badge of honor our disciplined lives of prayer, study, etc.  Disciplines of the faith are wonderful, but routine faith is dangerous.  Repetitive patterns of behavior can minimize Holy Spirit's influence in our lives.  Routine replaces His role that leads us into fresh times of worship, study and prayer.  His leading can and will often violate our routines.  He will turn the apple cart over, inside out, upside down and then smash it.

Typically, when an unplanned event,  crisis or emergency arises, we quickly turn to God.    It is then we utter one of those "convenient prayers" like I Need Thee.  It seems that until something forces us out of the "normalcy" of live, we say we love God, but live like we don't really need Him in the routine of things.  The song I Need Thee has only been an old hymn we sing from time to time until the unexpected happens.  We then sing it with gusto:

I need Thee
O I need Thee
Every hour I need Thee
O bless me now my Savior
I come to Thee

This should be our prayer every day as we ask Holy Spirit to lead. We are designed to lead lives of great intimacy and communication with God.  We sing this song with a desperate heart knowing that walking through this life without His minute by minute leading is pointless and flesh driven.  When we allow Holy Spirit to take the lead, He will direct us through it all such that God is glorified in all we do.  He not only leads us into refreshing times of prayer and study, but also leads us into darkness where we can be the light.  Adventures with Holy Spirit doesn't leave time for routine existence. 

Making a decision to rely more completely on God doesn't mean you let the stupid stick whack common sense out of you.  A pastor once told me that a member of his church would not use the toilet without consulting God first.  Really?!  God gave us bladders that signal us when it is time to go.  Holy Spirit doesn't make us helpless, He simply fills us with His wisdom, knowledge and understanding as he directs our path. 

Ephesians 1:17-19(NKJV)
17that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him,  18the eyes of our £understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,  19and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power 

Let's make it our daily cry and not just a convenient prayer -  I NEED THEE!

Monday, January 26, 2015

Praise Reports and Prayer Requests

1 John 5:14-15(NKJV)
14Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.  15And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.

Praise Reports:

Join in the celebration of 40 years of ministry with Alfie and Lena Fabe of South Africa.

Prayer Requests:
Breena - gastritis
Smith Family - virus
Dr. Dave - heart issues
Kingston - flu
Kay - healing and bereavement
Jack - healing
Rodney - healing
Uganda Mission - completely funded
Belinda - healing and energy
Elena - health and strength while in Ghana

Nation of Yemen
Population: 24.4 million
Christian: Less than 1%
Currently in crisis.

Location:  Middle East, bordering the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Aden, and Red Sea, between Oman and Saudi Arabia

Monday, January 19, 2015

Praise Reports and Prayer Requests

Ephesians 6:18(NKJV)
18praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—

Praise Report
Doristein - Cataract surgery went well.  Eyesight in one eye back to 20/20.  Must have other eye done.

Rose (age 10) -  won every category of her gymnastics meet

Please pray over these requests:
·         Barbara - inflammation in neck and shoulders with pain

·         Yvette's Uncle - deteriorating health

·         Life House Chapel in Accra, Ghana - favor with landlord; funds to purchase land

·         Sandy - neck and shoulder pain

·         Clarence - employment

·         Stephanie - funding for school

·         Sandra - peace and rest

Nation of Nepal
  • Population 30.9 million
  • 1% Christian
  • Located in Southern Asia between China and India
  • Home of Mount Everest and many other mountain ranges

Thursday, January 15, 2015

How Long is Eternity?

Although, we live in a very temporal world.  Everything is measured by time.  We count the hours, days, weeks and years as though they were finite for us.   This kind of thinking has made it hard for us to let go of our youth.  We are snipping, lifting, stretching, packing and shrinking our bodies as though it is the only one we will ever have.  We make decisions based on the latest trends, fashions and news.  We hold on to this life on earth like death has finality for us.  Yet the Lord wants us to think eternally.

24because  “All flesh is as grass, And all the glory of man as the flower of the grass.   The grass withers,   And its flower falls away, 25  But the word of the Lord endures forever.”  Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you.  1 Peter 1:24-25(NKJV)

In light of eternity, our lives on earth are quick.  1 Peter equates our lives to that of grass and flowers.  Flowers bloom beautiful, but the span can be very brief.   Most bloom annually, but some skip a year or two in between.  There is even a palm tree that blooms every 100 years (how they proved that is a mystery to me).  If we felt like a plant would only bloom once in our lifetime, we would probably dig them up and replant new ones each year.  Our thinking would be limited by lifespan of the bloom. 

That's the way it is spiritually.  When we think this life is all there is, we try to maximize our bloom for everyone on earth to see.

11He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end.  Ecclesiastes 3:11(NKJV)

We must think eternally.  This life may fade fast, but what we do in it has the potential of lasting throughout all eternity.  Let's move from doing everything to impact the temporal aspects of the lives around us to reaching for the eternal impact.  Abraham's obedience, David's passion and Paul's zealous pursuit of God and His people are still changing the lives of  believers thousands of years later.  What are you doing that people will feel the effects of or will be still discussing in a thousand years (should the Lord tarry)?  Let's move purposefully, strategically and eternally.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Prayers Requests

Psalms 141:2(NKJV)
Let my prayer be set before You as incense,   The lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.

Please join me in praying for the following concerns:

  • CB - employment and new residence
  • Shane - repentance and mercy
  • Leon - favor and comfort
  • Sandra - unconditional love and acceptance
  • Sydney - favor on new job
  • Breena - wholeness
  • Wayne - healing and provision
  • Dee - wisdom
  • RW - revival

Nation of Mali
Nearly 15+ million people
2.7 Christian (.6% Evangelical)
Life expectancy - 54 years
33% literacy
50% of country lives below International poverty line of $1.25/day

Thursday, January 8, 2015

The Delete Button

Wouldn’t it be nice if we had a delete button to use in this life?  Think about it.  It would be great, a powerful tool at our disposal.  Just imagine that you could say “delete” and the circumstance, situation, mistake, or disappointment is gone.  It’s out of there.  Accident – deleted.  Work problems – vanished.  Broken heart – disappeared.   A delete button could do wonders for producing peace in our lives.  But we, as we seem to have a tendency to do, would probably go too far in deleting things.  For instance, I would delete the kid who kept kicking my seat on the airplane?  That kid deserves the delete button in my annoyed opinion.  But no.  It wouldn’t be right.  The delete button must be used for good.  It should not be used to satisfy our every whim or to zap people who irritate us. 

Instead, the delete button would be better used to wipe out memories of our mistakes, failures and disappointments.  These are the things that hold us back limiting our potential.  We can’t afford to live lives filled with regrets.  If we turn to and trust God, we actually grow significantly in times of great hardship, disappointment and failure.  We mature and learn more about ourselves and our need for our Savior.  We sometimes need difficulties to push us deeper in our relationship with the Lord, but the lingering memories – DELETE! We should want the memories that hold us back, make us insecure or feel unworthy GONE. 

God has the best delete button of all.  He tells us that we can confess our sins to Him and He will forgive them and cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).  He says He will separate us from our sins as far as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:11-12).  He goes further and tells us He will wipe them from His memory (in other words – delete). 

“I, I am he who blots out your transgressions for my own sake, and I will not remember your sins. (Isaiah 43:25 ESV)

Do not let the past hold you back.  Forget about it!  God has.

Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead (Philippians 3:13 ESV).

Delete and Move Forward!

Monday, January 5, 2015

Praise and Prayers

14Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.  15And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.  1 John 5:14-15(NKJV)

Praise Reports:

·         Lucille - Brain Surgery went well.  She is now recovering.

·         Malik - adjusting well to new home.

·         Dambar - feeling much better


Prayer Requests:

·         Prayer Requests:

·         Wayne - heart problems; financial recovery

·         Sandra - High cholesterol, weight loss, fluid on my left knee, pain in back, hips feet and legs 

·         CB - family issues

·         Nation of Turkey

o   Approximately 74 million people
o   0% Evangelical Christians

Thursday, January 1, 2015

It Started with the Pepto-Bismol!

I was in the security section of the Northwest Arkansas airport.  I was returning to Atlanta to spend the last two weeks of the year at home.   Since I was in a wheelchair (my knee was not cooperating again), the TSA agents assisted me with screening my carry-on bags.  They pulled me aside and said I had two problems in my bags.  One of the young TSA agents gained my permission and began looking through my things for the offending objects, two bottles of Pepto-Bismol.  One bottle was in my travel purse. The other was in my laptop bag.  My stomach issues mandate I carry it.  (Why can’t the Bismol people make it in 4oz bottles?)

The agent said he would test the bottles in a special machine to insure both bottles were safe and not pink weapons of mass destruction.  While the one agent was testing the bottles, another agent started lecturing me on the benefits of the tablet form of the Pepto.  I assured the TSA pharmacist that I also carried the tablets, but the liquid worked better for me in emergencies.  The agent doing the testing proceeds to tell me how much he loves Pepto-Bismol.  He said, “It looks great, smells great and tastes great.  Sometimes I want to drink it for fun.”  What?! He was honest, sincere and full of passion about Pepto-Bismol.  Both I and the airport rep pushing my chair started to giggle.  He continued to tell us about his love of Pepto, as he put the bottles back in their respective bags.  As he was closing up my laptop bag, he noticed my scarf I keep tied around the handle (in case I get cold on the plane).  He was able to remove it without a problem, yet faced with the prospect of retying the scarf, he panicked.  After a double and then triple take at the bag and scarf, he turned to me and loudly declared, “I don’t know how to tie a scarf.  I’m a man!”  The rep and I erupted in laughter.  I took the scarf and my bags and headed to my gate. 

I have reflected on that encounter several times.  Of course, I smile over his love of Pepto-Bismol, but his declaration of being a man is always my final thought.  By that declaration, he was saying there are some things that a man can and cannot do; and as a man, he knew he was out of his depth with that scarf.  It made me think about us as Believers.  What do you think you can do as a believer?  Whatever your thoughts, they define exactly what you do.  You see, you are exactly who you think you are.  If you think that you are a Christian filled with the Spirit of God and can witness, pray, lay hands on the sick and they recover, well that’s exactly what you will do because you believe it.  If on the other hand you believe that gifts ceased or are only for special people, you will never move in the power of God.  If you don’t know that you are the Church of Jesus Christ (and not the building you attend weekly),  you will not witness and minister to those outside of the building.  

You are who you think you are.  Yes, there are times that we have wrong beliefs about our abilities.  However, we don’t base our thoughts about our abilities on our own vain imaginations.  Our thoughts and beliefs flow from the Word of God and is nurtured by the Spirit of God.  Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God (Romans 10:17).    The Word of God tells us exactly who we are and all that we can do as Believers.  If you think differently of yourself than what the Word of God says, you are off track.  Change your thinking and believe the Word.  The Word of God is not like some prescription medications.  These meds prescribed by professional mays or may not work to treat the problem and often they seem to have more side effects that actual effectiveness.  Pepto is good for me, but it does not solve my problem and sometimes doesn’t even soothe it.  The Word of God is certain.  It is established.  It is firm.  It does not change.  Heaven and earth will pass away, but Jesus said His word would never pass away (Matthew 24:35).

Trust what the Word of God says about you.  You are who YOU think you are and you can do exactly what the Word says you can do!  By the way, I think, believe and know I AM HEALED!