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Saturday, November 24, 2012

A Thank You Note

As I sit coffee in hand, lazily taking in the surroundings of my newly Christmasy-decorated home, I am thankful.  Thankful that Maslow’s theory is at work and we have the basic necessities to be comfortable, thankful that we have a little extra to make our home comfy cozy and probably way more clothes than 2 people need. I am thankful for a husband who loves me unconditionally and cheers me on as I run the race Christ has set before me.  I am thankful for parents who raised me to be compassionate and to give out of lack or abundance cheerfully.  I am thankful for a Father who sent His only Son to stand in propitiation for my sins and allow me to live a redemptive life.  I am thankful for Grace and Mercy and Love.   I am thankful that whether I have a good day or a bad day, I am content as I fall into the arms of refuge each and every night.
This is all relative to what I see in the world.  Some by choice, most not, there are those that live on the streets, beg on the corners, are mentally incapable of living a normal life or choose drugs and alcohol over food.  There are those oppressed by government, threatened by rebels, soldiers and racists.  Many spend their lives suffering daily bombings, rape and picking through garbage to feed their children to offer them one more day of life.  Others experience affliction from drought and unhealthy environments. 

I feel like I’ve seen it all; fortunately I know I have not.
We have, however, been privileged to work with those that have. 

Each missionary God has given us the honor of meeting has seen a different side of sorrow; some within our country and some outside.   Whether they have chosen to minister to a local church, community, a country or nation of people, their hearts are not their own.  Field warriors bear an uncommon compassion.  The dictionary describes the word uncommon as rare, unusual, exceptional; used to emphasize the great extent of something; concern, consideration, empathy and kindness.  The word compassion in Hebrew is “raham” and means “to love from the womb”; the tender love of a mother for her own helpless child. 

(God uses “raham” when He describes himself to Moses in exodus 34:6.  ‘Then the LORD passed by in front of him (Moses) and proclaimed, ‘The LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth’.)

Those called to venture into a world many of us are unaware of, are rare and tender lovers of people. Abounding in ‘lovingkindness and truth’ they share the devotion of Christ with those that don’t know what a Christmas decoration looks like, who couldn’t dream of having food on the table every night or a change of clothes each day.   They hug the little children, wash feet with hidden tears and tell silly stories just to bring a laugh. 

I’m thankful that my vision has been increased by these unique elite.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Don't Hide Your Light

It was a murky morning as, not quite awake, I grabbed my robe and a cup of heavily creamed coffee to drag myself up the stairs to our prayer room.  The dawn had not yet broken as I threw open the window to peek through the black at the neighborhood below. 

But then, my eye caught a small but discernible light through a pane of glass from down the street.  Attracted to the shining orb, there was comfort stemming from the knowledge that all was not dark.  I had found hope.  It called out from the muted first light reminding me that God had spoken promises over my life, over our city and over our country.    

As I gazed upon this seemingly brilliant star, drawn motionless to the peacefulness it offered, a smile stole over my countenance.    There was no movement from beyond the curtains, yet warmth consumed me in the smoke rising from the chimney.  Had I been a weary traveler, I would have chosen this home to sojourn, expecting to be wrapped in a cozy blanket and offered a warm bowl of soup.  

This is what God has called us to be in Matthew 5:14-16 by transforming ourselves into the likeness of Christ, becoming a reflective light of God’s Glory, offering hope in a dark world, sharing a smile or a kind word and bringing the truth of God’s word to life. 

“You are the light of the world.  A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden.  Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand and it gives light to all who are in the house.  Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your father in heaven.”

Saturday, November 17, 2012


Francis Frangipane
Israel was hopelessly outnumbered. Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon "and all his army, with all the kingdoms of the earth that were under his dominion and all the peoples, were fighting against Jerusalem" and its remaining cities (Jer. 34:1). Because of Israel’s sin, apparently even the Lord, Israel’s protector, had withdrawn. For nearly forty years, Jeremiah the prophet pleaded with God’s people to repent, but they would not have it. Israel was nearly apostate, and the dire warnings of the prophet Jeremiah were about to come to pass. 

However, hidden in the ways of God was a plan, a redemptive strategy that would reverse Israel’s direction. If the Jews implemented a "Year of Remission" (see Deut. 15:1-18), God would show to them the same mercy they showed to one another. What was required was that "each man [would] set free his male servant and each man his female servant . . . so that no one should keep them, a Jew his brother, in bondage" (Jer. 34:9). 
Not only did they agree to this year of release, but "all the officials and all the people obeyed." Then, in earnest faith, they "entered into the covenant . . . so that no one should keep them any longer in bondage; they obeyed, and set them free" (Jer. 34:10).

The Bible says the Judeans cut a calf in two and then passed "between its parts" (Jer. 34:18). This was the same kind of covenant ritual Abraham had made with the Lord centuries earlier (see Gen. 15:10, 17-18.). 

The redemptive plan of God was this: If the Israelites set free their slaves, they would not be taken as slaves. If they showed mercy, God would show Himself merciful to them as well. Even though they were, by all counts, nearly apostate, the act of releasing the debts of others would have averted the destruction of their cities, for "mercy triumphs over judgment" (James 2:13)! 
As they were releasing one another, something marvelous occurred. Supernaturally the Lord drew "the king of Babylon…away" (Jer. 34:21). At the very moment the people were releasing the debts of others, God was reducing their debt to Him. What they did on earth was actually being replicated for them in Heaven!

In all the years since the establishment of the Law, Israel had never celebrated a year of release. Yet now, even with their enemies within striking range, Israel covenanted with God to free every man his slave.

Unforgiveness In the Church
How does the above story relate to us? We too are facing overwhelming foes. Our society is overrun with corruption; our heroes have fallen, and he who speaks truth makes himself a prey. The prophets warn of coming judgment, and still we provoke the Lord with our harden hearts. 

Yet, it is not too late. We can likewise embrace a covenant of release. If we forgive all we hold as debtors, the Lord promises He will forgive us as well. Did He not enshrine this truth when He taught us to pray “forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors” (Matt. 6:12). Did He not say, “Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father . . . will also forgive you your transgressions” (Mark 11:25)? 

We need a national covenant of forgiveness and release. Let us begin with those in our homes and families. Let us extend forgiveness to our neighbors, and proclaim release to those who in our churches. Let us sow mercy in our land, and do so quickly that the mercy of God will fall again on our land. 

Search our hearts, O Lord, even as we kneel at the altar, reveal those who may still old a debt against us. Help us to be reconciled with others! (see Matt. 5:23-24). Indeed, let us take this one step further: let us release those who have supported political candidates with whom we strongly disagree. 

It is time to rebuild our lives in Christ, and reunite in the power of forgiveness and redemption. Let us bring Christ’s covenant of forgiveness into the fabric of our inter-racial relationships and so prove ourselves servants of the Lamb. 

The Sad End of the Jeremiah 34
In spite of the great breakthrough Israel experienced, their story ends badly. For when the enemy left and the pressure was off, each man "took back his" male and female servants " . . . and brought them into subjection" (see vv. 13-16). 

Beloved, hear me please: if only the Jews would have followed through and held fast their release, the Book of Lamentations never would have been written! Mercy would have triumphed and remained, but such was not the case. 

Still, for us, our final chapters are yet to be written. We can learn from the example we see in Jeremiah 34. If we will embrace mercy, if we can sincerely release one another, we will escape the dire consequences coming toward our world. Our actions today, even now, will determine whether our society is blessed or judged. Let us, therefore, release the debts of every man and covenant for mercy for our land.

Friday, November 2, 2012



Today marks the 2nd week of our home coming.  I can’t find my heart.  I know it’s physically in my body, but it surely isn’t beating.  I left it somewhere among the kids at Bridges, or the women at WEEP; somewhere in Kisii it calls for me.  Don’t get me wrong.  I love coming back, catching up with my friends, jumping in my comfy cozy bed at night, calling mom and dad at whim, using the internet at will and sneaking into a stocked kitchen for a snack at night.   I love that the WalMart is down the street and my church is 7 minutes driving distance.  I love that the air is fresh, and the streets are clean and gas is only ‘almost’ $4 a gallon. I even love my little daily routine.   

But, my heart isn’t in it.  It waits for me among the acacia trees, the sewage-filled gutters, the dirty-happy-singing-dancing children and the people that believe Jesus will heal, Jesus will provide food, and Jesus will bring hope.  It calls for me from the slums of Kibera and Gnong, the fields of Kiliti and the beauty of Bungoma. 

Lord, you have stolen that which beats 82 times a minutes to keep me alive and given it to those that bring laughter, tears, joy and freedom.  Knowing you do nothing without purpose, I take a deep breath, put one foot in front of the other, a smile on my face and make my choice.  I can wallow in my grief or choose to accomplish something for Your Kingdom while I await the fruition of Your promise.  I choose life and that in abundance.  Thank you that you’ve given me 2 wonderful places to call home & that no matter where I am You also abide.  Always and forever.  You and me.

Thursday, November 1, 2012


I pray you are blessed and encouraged today...

SHIFT: move or cause to move from one place to another, especially over a small distance:

• change the position of one's body
• change the emphasis, direction, or focus of
• change in emphasis, direction, or focus

There is a Kingdom shift happening right now, which is manifesting at many levels. The first week of October, I began to feel and sense a spiritual shift happening. It was so tangible that I found myself saying, "Who hit the shift key?" I even had a sign one morning last week when I heard a loud boom and felt a wave of power go through my house. I felt a wave of power hit me in my back and move me forward. Whether it was an earthquake or something else I am not sure, but I now know it was a sign in the natural of what God is doing in the spiritual, and very possibly could have been an event that the Holy Spirit orchestrated just for me as a sign.

The "Shift Key" that will unlock your Kingdom Shift is to "Perceive it, Believe it and Enter it!" So here are the ones I am aware of:

A National Shift: The American people lost sight of our true identity and purpose as a nation. When identity is restored purpose is restored, and with purpose comes empowerment, and with empowerment comes a strong sense of direction! So there is a national shift happening that will affect our identity, purpose, power and direction. Within this national shift we will see a government and economic shift. There is also a national spiritual shift that is unfolding right now that our prayers can help quicken and expedite into being.

A Revelatory Shift: I've stepped into and I'm experiencing increased revelation, not only for myself, but I'm hearing this from many of my friends in ministry. Let me quickly say that this revelatory increase is not limited to ministry teachers and preachers but is there for ALL. In fact, there are new levels of revelation for the righteous in the seven mountains. There are things I have spoken and talked about for years, but I am hearing profound things come out of my mouth that I've never said before. Holy Spirit is rocking me with the increase and depth of mysteries and secrets He's sharing and revealing. The atmosphere is pregnant with new depths of revelation knowledge that is just waiting to be birthed into your understanding. It's time to start pushing!

A Glory Shift of the Presence of God: I am in awe of the increase of God's presence within my life. He is daily manifesting His tangible presence to me, through me and around me. He draws to me when I present myself, He surprises me with waves of His glory when I least expect it. I have always known the delight of His presence, but there has definitely been a shift in the manifestations and levels of His glory not only to me but to all who contain the treasure of His glory within!

A Harvest Shift: There is a harvest shift that is beginning. A month ago I had a dream that I woke up, looked out my bedroom window, and there was a vineyard that had been planted overnight which was already producing. I was aware of workers that had labored in the night to accomplish this whom I believe were angels. It was so real that when I woke up I wanted to look out my bedroom window to see if there was a new vineyard. I believe through the dream God was showing me Amos 9:13, which says, "Behold, the days come, saith [Jehovah], that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that soweth seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt."

I believe the stage is being set to reap a harvest of souls for God's Kingdom. I believe there is a harvest of new wine, which speaks of the anointing and presence of the Holy Spirit. Lastly, I believe there is a harvest of supernatural provision! Remember, you can only harvest what's already been sown! The harvest shift is a shift of timing and speed that will produce things almost quicker than you can sow them.

These are but a few of the mighty things God is shifting in the earth right now, but more importantly, in our own personal lives! Begin to look for it – begin to believe it!

Dena McClure