Archive for January, 2012

Does God allow … ?*

Yes, no, yes, yes, yes, no, no. no. NO! That is the conclusion I have come to after thinking about His promises all week. Jesus—never! Not in His time. And He is the face of God in our time, in the new covenant.

Small heart panel by Sue Kemnitz

Jesus doesn’t allow sickness anywhere that I know of. It is recorded that he healed every sickness and every disease (Matt 9:35). Moreover, He tells us to heal the sick, cast out demons, cleanse the lepers, and raise the dead. We can even step on snakes, and drink poison without ill effect, tho I will leave that alone. I’m just not going there.

Jesus doesn’t allow a storm. He doesn’t rile up the clouds, cause the earth to shake and quake, or tell tsunami’s to rush onto land. Jesus calms the storm. And admonished, “You of little faith” = You, too can do it! Jesus speaks peace and blessing to the house, and ensures forgiveness.

Jesus is quite unilaterally and always good! And He is the face of God.

Somewhere in the midst of this, I am totally tweaked by God’s trust and even pleasure in giving us the keys of the kingdom. Jesus says this, “And that’s not all. You will have complete and free access to God’s kingdom, keys to open any and every door: no more barriers between heaven and earth, earth and heaven. A yes on earth is yes in heaven. A no on earth is no in heaven.” (Matt 16:19 The Message) Does that amaze anyone else? He also gives us this assurance, that as we ask and pray, He will do it. (Matt. 21:22, John 16:23-24, Matt. 7:7) This is amazing. And daunting.

Consider this, “Call to Me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden (mighty) things that you have not known” (Jer. 33:3). And, “For the Lord GOD does nothing without revealing his secret to his servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7). “But we impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God, which God decreed before the ages for our glory” (1 Cor. 2:7). These verses make me wonder, can we be shown the “hidden” things to come, and then pray and declare against them? Ahead of the time of their arrival? Is that a crucial part of taking dominion that the Lord gave us in Genesis?  Is that one of the ways that we will do “the greater”?

This happened a couple weeks ago. The team from the NewDay School of Ministry went with our friend Paul Rapley first to First Love in LeSeuer and also to NewDay one Saturday evening. We asked the Lord for “Words of Knowledge,” in other words, hidden things (to us) that God now highlights, things that He wants to heal that particular evening. We saw legs grow out to be even, spines come into alignment, lumps diminish, young men stand taller, and depression bow to Truth. Why doesn’t everything get healed 100% right now because we have a good God? I don’t know. I do know, however, that the problem is with me, not Him.

Does this work with the enemy’s plans, too? Did it not say that He’ll show us the hidden, that He’ll reveal secrets. And quite possibly so we can dash the enemy’s plans? Whether its sickness, joblessness, disasters, or attacks of any size and shape, can we destroy that plan?

How does this pertain to, “Did God allow…” My question is, did God allow it, or is it the enemy at work, lying, stealing and destroying. A more painful question is, did we allow it? Ouch. But I think it’s an invitation to explore. Dive deeper. Grab the greater.

Lets be gentle on ourselves and grow. We’re just not “there” yet. We’re still on the potter’s wheel. We’re still learning the incredible authority we do have and the incredible power in His name! We’re are learning to be conquerors.

My hope is that we will be intimate with God, so He will show us the hidden things to come, and if its the enemy causing them, how to conquer. Then there won’t be a question, “Did God allow …?” We step out and ask God the prayers to pray. The intercession, in whatever form that takes, that will destroy the works of the enemy. He is sovereign, yet He puts way more power into His believers that we ever would. He’s chosen to let us call on His name and His power! Jesus accepted the cross, yes, to save us from sin, but also so we could be powerful against the enemy. So we, taking after Jesus, can use the authority He gives us to destroy the works of the enemy. (Acts 10:38)

It’s really Good News! Better than we imagined.

Have big faith! Step out in His authority, He will do it!

Where will you be the conqueror this week? What plans of the enemy will you squash?

Only Believe.

Small heart panel by Sue Kemnitz
available for  purchase

CFAI.coDaily Painters of Minnesota •  International Abstract Artists

* Please note that I am not, in any stretch of the imagination, a theologian. These are the ramblings of a Jesus-lover.


gentle Jesus, the invitation

Jesus invites us to take His yoke, to learn from Him, and to be gentle and lowly, like Him.

heavens pen by Sue Kemnitz

“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

Holy Spirit’s big plan is one thing and one thing alone. It is to form us into the image of Jesus. It is all about Jesus, after all. The verses above, I believe, are the initial stepping stones to do that. If we don’t take these to heart, nothing else will flourish for any length of time.

Invitation one:

Take His yoke. We often see the pictures of the oxen yoked together. This keeps them in line. Keeps them from running amuk on their own and out of mischief, or, even worse, from just settling in one spot and not going anywhere at all. But, given the context, this is not what Jesus meant. Jesus is yoked to the Father, not for control, but so the Father can do all the heavy lifting with His broad shoulders. So that as the Father whispers, we can hear clearly. And when the Father winks at us, we can see His pleasure—the light of His countenance—His smile.

Invitation two:

Learn from Jesus. How does Jesus love? Unconditionally and eternally steadfast. How does Jesus react? With joy, patience, forgiveness, and mercy. How does Jesus see? Through His heart into ours. How does Jesus walk? Intentionally. How does Jesus know? Through intimacy, the give and take, called prayer. How does Jesus speak? Only with the words of a loving Father. How does He live? Simply. Why does He die? To rise.

Invitation three:

Be gentle and humble. I think of how Jesus treated the women in His life. “Mom, it’s not time for miracles, but since you desire it, so do I.” Jesus defends Mary, who simply sits at His feet. He knows the value of sweet perfume and tears. He raises Lazareth, to show His love for Martha and Mary. He forgives the adulteress and gives Living Water at the well. Lowly and humbly, not once boasting of the many miracles. In fact, quite the contrary.

These aren’t always welcome invitations. There are times this week when I haven’t reacted in joy, let alone patience, when I haven’t been intentional. And haven’t felt mercy. And that’s exactly when the Holy Spirit invites us back, assures us, that we’re loved, and leads us back to Jesus, Himself. The Living Water and the Rest we need.

That’s Good News!

When has Jesus prompted you this week to be better? And did you feel the reassurance of His love afterwards? Give us a sentence or two about it.

Only Believe.

heavens pen by Sue Kemnitz
available for  purchase

CFAI.coDaily Painters of Minnesota •  International Abstract Artists

our Hero.

Psalm 91 is an amazing read! How many promises of God can fit into one psalm?

Fire Fall Down by Sue Kemnitz
He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
   will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the LORD, “My refuge and my fortress,
   my God, in whom I trust.” Psalm 91:1-2

To dwell with Him is to be protected and loved beyond anything we can imagine. Up close and personal. With Him. It is to live in peace, in His reality.

Think on all the promises, and how Jesus demonstrates each promise to us, while He’s on the earth, and now!

The enemy snares. Jesus focuses on who He is, whom He worships, and whom He trusts. Mark 4:1-11
The enemy kills, steals and destroys. Jesus gives life, abundantly. John 10:10
The enemy instills fear. Jesus stills us with peace. John 14:27
The enemy shoots arrows. Jesus is a shield. John 17:12
The enemy attacks our bodies. Jesus heals. John 9:1-7
Jesus sends His angels. Acts 12:7
Jesus guards us. John 8:3-7

What Jesus did then, He still does for us today. We saw dozens of people healed this past weekend at First Love in LeSeuer. Pain leaving multiple body parts. Feet, elbows, heads, chins, backs. A young man with cerebral palsy standing taller. People saved. Lumps dissolving. So many stories of His goodness. All by the magnificent power in the name of Jesus. Love, love.

Who is this Jesus? He is the One who is always with us! The One who loves to laugh and cry with us. The One who dries our eyes and turns sadness into rejoicing. The One who makes good of every circumstance. Our Best Friend.

As the end of the Psalm says (paraphrased):
Love lavishly. Live protected.
Hear Him whisper our name in the midst of trials.
Call on Him. Listen to His answers.
He’s our Hero—standing ready to save the day.

And we get to live with Him forever. In Paradise.

That’s Good News!

Where has Jesus delivered on one of His promises to you? Let us know!

Only Believe.

Fire Fall Down by Sue Kemnitz
Fire Fall Down • 6″x6″ panel • Click here to purchase
CFAI.coInternational Abstract Artists Daily Painters of Minnesota

Ever our awesome God

God is forever! Bigger than we can ask or think! If we could only grasp how big He is…

The King by Sue Kemnitz

“And He said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.” Ex. 3:6

In this verse, Moses brings an awareness to us of God’s greatness and imparts a sense of awe for our God that I’m not sure we quite get these days. Our God is loving and He is joy. He is peace and He is also truth. He was there before time began (Gen 1:1), He is here now (Matthew 22:32), and He will be forever (Deut 33:27). But more than that, He’s bigger.

I wonder, though, is it possible that if we stand in a greater awe and awareness—when we worship and pray—almost afraid to see His face, that our faith will increase. We will love in greater depths. We will see more miracles. We will see Him move more, just because we see a God Who is so much more? I don’t know, but I think we might.

God so often just plain thrills me. He knows my thoughts and hears my voice. He releases—sometimes even before I pray—just because He loves me and knows my heart. A group of us got together the other evening, and I’d been wanting to find some new soaking music. I didn’t plan any music, just assuming I’d throw something on to soak to when they came. One of the ladies walked in saying that she had just received in the mail a great soaking CD. That’s my God. Someone who gives, even before we ask.

I will add, it is important to ask. He tells us to. And assures us we’ll receive when we do (Matt. 7:7).

But I also think that as we turn our affection towards Him and in awe, we’ll receive even before we think to ask. Just because that’s Who He is. Just because He loves us and is a proud Papa. He’s great and awesome…and more!

So, as you spend time with Him, dwell on how Big God is. I think He’ll thrill you. I think He will excite you. I think He will surprise you. And I think you’ll also be in a place to receive just what you need, just when you need it, sometimes even before asking.

k? k.

God bless you. Abundantly and richly.

Only Believe.

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The King by Sue Kemnitz
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