Wednesday, June 30, 2010

June 30, 2010, "Mem, Prayer of Healing in Jesus Name"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"...By His (Jesus') stripes we are and were healed."
~ Isaiah 53:5 & I Peter 2:24 ~

I imagine in time past a little girl many years ago looking up at the blue sky, the wind blowing in her hair and the clouds moving slowly above her. Like reflection in water, you can see the skies moving through her awestruck eyes; so moved by the majesty of the heavens that declare the Holiness and Glory of God.

The dreams that roll through her mind at that very moment are as a dance of beauty and romance. Who will I marry one day? What will my children look like? I will be the best mom ever! As time passed through her; the excitement of marriage, the joys of children suddenly seemed to stand still. The rough edges of adulthood as a result of life, concealed the smooth surface of beauty and innocence of a child. The beauty of a child, seeing through eyes of faith and powerful, immovable love.

I wonder, as time passed through her life, what happened when she sat in the doctor's office as she heard the report of cancer over her body? Did life seem to end at that moment? Maybe. Yet something inside of her said to fight. She fought with all her might and with the assistance of her doctors, family and friends she came through. Little did she know that she would have to face cancer numerous times throughout her life. Today, June 30th, 2010, the doctors have found cancer yet again in her vocal chords. She was previously in the hospital as her kidneys shut down. Barraged with great trials of sickness and disease, she still holds her head up high to be there for her beautiful family. She sees them as a blessing for this is who she has fought to live for...family!

The beautiful woman whom I mention is a woman I have never met. However, we are privileged to know her son JJ and his beautiful family. His mom's name is Mem.

Thank you for praying for Mem and her family. This day I declare by the authority of Jesus Christ and by His power through the Holy Spirit that Mem is healed in her physical body because of the Blood of Jesus! We pray for removal of any and ALL hindrances in the name of Jesus. We believe the report of the Lord that the Blood of Jesus has conquered sickness, disease and infirmities as Jesus revealed as He was led by The Compassionate One, revealing the Father God. I also pray God's ministering laborers into your life so that you will see your faith increased by the power of God's encouragement through others upon you. We thank You Lord in advance for what You have already seen done be manifested upon Mem's life in Jesus name! Thank You Lord that we give YOU all the glory and we applaud your majesty! Thank you Lord! In Jesus Name. Amen!

The many Triumphant Victorious Reminders are that:
Jesus healed the sick!
Jesus opened the eyes of the blind!
Jesus opened the ears of the deaf!
Jesus opened the mouths of the mute!
Jesus delivered those who were demon possessed!
Jesus resurrected the dead because He is Life and Life Eternal!
More than anything, Jesus is The Lamb of God and coming back as the Lion of Judah!
Jesus is Victory!
Jesus is The Way!
Jesus is The Truth!
Jesus is The Life!
Jesus is Lord! Hallelujah!

Mem, hang onto the promises of God. Read the Gospel of John and see what Jesus did for all who came to Him! He never said, "No"!
His "YES!" was an action!
The Loudest "Yes" ever heard!
He willingly came to earth and put away His Diety to become flesh for us! He took the violent stripes upon His back and hung on the old rugged cross. He declared the Battle Cry of Victory right before the Roman soldiers, "It Is Finished"! Did you know that when the Roman's would take over a city, their victory cry was, "It is Finished!"? Yes! He used the Battle Cry of the Enemy and turned it around as He revealed the Holy, Just, Righteous and Redemptive Plan of God! The Glory of God revealed in his death but more than anything in His power of Resurrection Life! This is our reminder that He has the last word! Always and forever! For eternity!

Anyone reading this, if you have not received the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ, I urge you to do so! Take the Rescuer's Hand and let Him lead You to Everlasting Life that you have never dared to dream! Call upon the Name of the Lord and you SHALL be saved (Acts 2:21)! There is no penance, no nothing that you could do that would come close to saving your own soul as He has provided. His gift is FREE to you, but it COST HIM EVERYTHING! Once you get a taste of the Goodness of the Lord; you will not be able to help but share it with others. Your capability to love will be surpassed by the overflowing, constant love of God that you will not be able to keep it to yourself.

No matter the circumstances, the Joy of the Lord will reveal His strength even in your weakness (II Corinthians 12:9). He will bring you through. He longs to do so; but He will never force Himself into relationship with anyone.
He asks you to come; so come willingly.
His beautiful Hands reach out to you. Will you take His hands?
Will you cling to Him as He embraces you?
O how He loves you and me with a love that we could never describe or imagine!
Say, "Yes" to Him today.
Will life be easier? I'm not saying that...but I am saying it will be more beautiful, even when the storms of life attempt to come against us; we can know and experience Him and who He is which is Peace that surpasses ALL of our understanding.

Be encouraged today by the reminder of the One who longs to love you and also longs to be loved by you!

Monday, June 28, 2010

June 28, 2010, "It is our glory to overlook an offense"

Proverbs 19:11, Micah 6:8, Isaiah 61:3

I do not know where to begin. What I will say though is I am blown away by the faithfulness of God!

This is a follow up of the testimony of God and what He did and showed me after the accusation that I wrote about in my last post.

The things I received after writing the devotional were these words:
* "I Am your Defender"
* Protocol, learning to represent as a daughter of the Most High God and King
* Opportunity to pray for the accuser
* Don't ask, "Why me, Lord?" Declare, "What can I learn from this? Thanking God for the opportunity for growth."

As I prayed that evening for the accuser, I realized it was like a balm to my soul, my mind. In the midst of the prayer; the compassion of God came over me.

The next morning I awoke with a heaviness; despairing over the words spoken. I was out of bed and with great fervency, I lifted up my arms and said, "Lord, I need encouragement from You! Lord, from You! I don't want words from another person that You can utilize, I want to hear from You. Lord, I know I'm being selfish, but I must hear from You!" As I desperately cried out, I was standing next to my bed. I looked down at the nightstand and was reminded of Lisa Bevere's book, "Be Angry, But Don't Blow It!" I picked it up and shuffled through the pages finally opening it as my eyes fell upon Proverbs 19:11. I put the book down and literally ran to the Bible opened it to Proverbs 19:11 (Amplified) and there it read, "Good sense makes a man restrain his anger, and it is his glory to overlook a transgression or an offense."

All I can say is that I was overwhelmed with the Oil of Joy that replaced my mourning
(Isaiah 61). At that very moment, I heard in my spirit which ministered to my soul (mind), what is it that I require of you Teresa? And immediately was led to Micah 6:8. I spoke it forth, "Lord, this is what you require of me, to do justly, to love kindness and mercy and to walk humbly before You God."

The more I was being ministered to by the Word, I was simultaneously experiencing this love covering (banner of love~Song of Solomon 2:4) taking place in which the wrong that had just taken place the day before no longer effected me in the least. I was literally experiencing this untouchable power! What came to my mind in that moment of this experience was Psalm 91:7, "a thousand may fall at my side and ten thousand at my right hand BUT it shall not come near me."

Wow!!!! Isn't that awesome? That is our God...our Shield, our Protector! I shake my head with a great big smile knowing and being reminded yet again how awesome my God is!

As I went to church and continued to pray for this young woman, I realized even more so the anger and hurt on the inside of her that she has not dealt with. Compassion for her began to overflow as I realized what was taking place...I was abiding in my God and as He is constantly overflowing, that overflow was affecting me and in turn was effecting her as she was unknowingly being prayed for.

Did my mind feel like praying for her? Absolutely not. My capacity to be mindful of her in this way is not of me or in my power. The tools that God has provided to lean on Him are already within me...on the inside readily available...His Divine Nature on the inside of me! I didn't have to pray for the tools, I needed to stir it up by being humble, putting away how I was wronged and letting it be made right by the Righteous King!

The amazing part was God utilized our pastor to speak on "The Place of Prayer". He gave many examples throughout Jesus' life where He found the place to pray. For example before He chose the twelve disciples He went up to the mountain and all night He prayed (Luke 6:12). He then spoke of Paul and Silas as they were in shackles imprisoned (Acts 16:13-31). They took the opportunity of the prison to make it a 'place' of prayer. The shackles upon their bodies became the place of prayer and praise. One of the essential keys he pointed out was that the other prisoners were LISTENING! I realized and was reminded at that moment, that opportunity of offense became my 'place' to see God come through. The offense became the 'place of prayer'. And the offense became an opportunity to become a platform to proclaim the awesomeness of God as there are many who are watching and listening, whether I know it or not!

Wooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!! I can't help but shout; for as Paul and Silas were freed; I was freed from the bondage that I could have fell into; and that I had fallen into! With God's delivering tool of obedience; I am here to testify of God's glorious testimony in the midst of the test!

What did I learn? In terms of protocol, be a daughter of the King! Rise up, don't sink below. When false accusations come; act like royalty, not like a desperate survivor. What would royalty do? Just what Jesus did, He did not speak a word in His defense...for He knew He would have the last word because of His Father The Defender! Jesus prayed, "Father forgive them for they know not what they do." That must be our prayer.

Jesus revealed His complete trust in His Father. Most importantly to get to that place, I see that the trust was revealed through the intimate times of prayer with His Father God.

Jesus leads by example, and we must follow His example for the results are always LIFE! For He is Life! When we are going through 'stuff', we must not grow weary by what we are passing by as we go through! We must grow in God's strength knowing what He is bringing us to as we go through!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

June 26 & 27, 2010 "Accusations"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises against you in judgement You shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is from Me," says the Lord."
~ Isaiah 54:17 ~

Have you ever been broadsided with a hurtful accusation that was not true? How did you respond? Notice...I didn't ask how did you 'feel'? But how did you respond?

Without giving too much detail, I received a text from a number I did not recognize. The text accused me of remaining friends with this person's ex-husband via 'facebook' even after their divorce. This woman is someone who visits our fellowship. I had forgotten he was even a friend on my 'facebook' as I never kept up with him. It was strange because for about two months I felt that I needed to deactivate my 'facebook', but prolonged the deactivation until a couple of weeks ago. In hind sight, I look upon that stirring now and see maybe one of the reasons why the stirring to deactivate the 'facebook' was so strong. Who knew that all along the grudge of bitterness was stewing in this woman's heart towards me for something I was completely oblivious to. All in all, I tried calling her on the number that showed up on my text. I left a voice mail to apologize for any unintended offense and asked her to call me back so we could work it out. I then text her to let her know I left her a voice mail. A few moments later, I received her text which stated, "I do not have anything to say to you. What you did was shady. I do not trust you." When I read those words it stabbed me like a knife in my heart. My throat felt cold, my hands began to shake and the anger started to rise up in me.

My first response was, "God bless you" and as I walked to my car, I allowed her words to eat at me. As I opened my car door, sat down and closed the door, I reacted with utter craziness and went into a rage saying to myself every expletive known to man. Of course, I didn't stop there and I called a friend to let her know my situation and cursed again; and immediately I apologized as it was silent. I apologized and she was honest with me and said, "Teresa, that really took me back. You can not allow that anger to get to this point. You have to rise above this and shake it off." O, I didn't want to hear it, but I needed to. I humbly asked my friend to pray over me and she did so beautifully; lifting me and the burden I bore up to the Lord.

As she prayed over me and we closed our conversation a few minutes went by and I decided to write a text back to this person in which it stated, "I am sorry that you feel that way, I really like you, but the victim role must be getting old. Rise up and be who you are...a daughter of the King who celebrates other women." Of course, this only fueled insults which stated I was provocative and fake and then was accused of going after her husband. I sat there looking at my phone stunned and steaming mad, but my reply was, "Enough! Enough!" And I told her she needed to grow up and stop being the two 'v''s in life. I will say this to testify against myself, it was not done in love at all.

After all this happened; I felt God's gentle leading to come to Him and repent. After repenting of my tongue that chose death and not life, receiving the offense as a gift which it was never a gift to receive. I had no business receiving it or even entertaining such a thing. In that moment my spirit rose up and I heard myself praising the praises to God for who He was even in the midst of this situation. As I started to praise the Lord I began remembering the indescribable majesty and holiness of our God as it dwarfed this tiny little offense in comparison to God. I was reminded in that moment that any accusation, and every tongue that rose up against me in judgement God would take care of because we are a heritage of the servant of the Lord. I became thankful of this beautiful promise and the Spirit of God reminded me to begin to pray God's mercy over this woman.

At first, I definitely did not respond the way I needed to. The tool to put the offense down was available but I chose not to utilize it. I chose the 'default button' which was to react in sin versus acting in love.

I am asking myself, "What can I learn from this situation?"
Well, first I must utilize the wisdom from the Lord and not become legalistic or fearful. I have learned through this situation that some people will not like me, no matter what. They will find a reason not to like me, and I can't help that nor prevent it. I must still focus and place my eyes and trust in my God to get me through. I have an outgoing personality and with that can come accusations of being flirtatious, which is not my intention. Knowing that this can be perceived, I must utilize wisdom and cling to God to be proper and adhere to the wisdom of God in all things; especially dealing with the opposite sex.

What saddened me the most today? The passion that God has placed on the inside of me for His daughters to come together and celebrate one another; the exact opposite happened today and I felt as though I had failed and unknowingly disappointed someone who I truly liked and felt that I could be utilized as a vessel to encourage and edify. Please pray for me that I will not receive condemnation and I will rise above, not sinking below in despair and pity.

I am thankful to the Lord for the reminder from Psalm 92:4, "For You Lord have made me glad through your work; I will triumph in the works of your hands!"

June 26, 2010, "Written one year ago today"

Excerpt from post written on June 26, 2009 (One year ago today)
Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
By: Teresa Criswell

"The LORD [is] their strength, And He [is] the saving refuge of His anointed."
~ Psalm 28:8 ~


The stars and the moon illuminate the dark sky. The wind softly blowing as the sand moves effortlessly in the wind.

The men and women move with caution as their feet are dressed in black combat boots. Their heavy boots sink into the deep sandy ground as they advanced towards the enemy. Suddenly the leader of the group signals to the rest of his men and women who see through their night vision goggles to stop.

At this very moment halfway around the world, an intercessor awakes from her sleep as she is immediately led to pray. The words uttered out of her mouth flow like a river out of her belly. This is a moment she will never forget. Her mind cannot comprehend what she is praying for. The only thing she is sure of is that the Lord has awoke her to pray for the soldiers that serve her country.

As she prays, on the other side of the globe the men and women who advance towards the enemy territory are realizing with harsh reality that they are about to be ambushed. Suddenly at that very moment they watch in disbelief as the enemies run the opposite direction in absolute horror. Our soldiers watch as their enemies run for their lives. It was as though they had seen something that frightened them to the point their hearts almost failed them.

Running for their lives, the woman who awoke with the leading to pray was released to go back to bed. She had no idea why she was led to pray and had no idea why she suddenly stopped, however, she had great peace that she had done what she was led to do and that was to pray.

God in His great infinite power can release His warring angels on their behalf, as they heed God's word.

As I imagine this scenario, I am pressed by the reminder from Poppa C.O. to pray for our soldiers that serve our country. We cannot forget them nor shall we forget their families. We also must not forget the ones who gave their lives for the liberty and freedom that we should not misuse for our own intentions. I am also reminded to be grateful to the ones who are still living yet have lost limbs, an outward reminder to us of what they lost we gained.

May we pray to God through Jesus Christ protection over our men and women. For peace to surpass all understanding over them and their families that they leave behind. We pray for the parents who release their young men and women into harms way. We pray peace to replace anxiety and fear. We pray for wives who miss their husband's and husband's who miss their wives beyond what we could ever imagine. We pray for the children who dream of the day they get to see their mommy or daddy again.

I think of the mother, Dora Johnston who recently released her son, Jake to the Marine Corp. This devotional is dedicated to you and all the families that are in your similar situation. I pray you know the God who is your refuge in time of trouble. I pray you know His great strength in the midst of feeling the weakest and most helpless. Our hearts go out to you and we are honored and privileged to pray for you all.

May we know the power of prayer and truly remember that it is not 'just' prayer that changes things..it is the God of prayer who changes things through Jesus Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

June 22, 2010, "Ezra/Provision ceases Hindrance"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"For Ezra had prepared and set his heart to seek the Law of the Lord [to inquire for it and of it, to require and yearn for it], and to do and teach in Israel its statutes and its ordinances."
~ Ezra 7:10 Amplified ~

As we continue on in the Book of Ezra, we see the miraculous giving and provisions to build the Temple and then suddenly the enemy comes in. The enemy being the Samaritans. They bullied and terrified the people. But it didn't stop there; they even hired 'terrorists or bullies' against the people of Israel to frustrate their purpose and plans all the days that King Cyrus reigned. The money being poured into frustrating the purposes and plans of the people; I can not imagine the cost both financially but more than that...the cost of going against the people of God.

The Book of Ezra is not detailed in what exactly happened but in chapter four we realize that the companions of King Artaxerxes and his scribe went up to Jerusalem to the Jews by force and power and made them cease; the building of God's house actually stopped until the second year of the following king...King Darius I of Persia.

I am reminded that even today in our own lives, many times we see a glimpse of God's purpose, we see the provisions and then suddenly by force either by circumstances, discouragement and/or opposition we cease that which God has graced us to finish. Many times we don't fight for the things of God; instead we fight over our own agendas which are not to glorify God but attempting to save ourselves.

Getting back on track, finally the second year of King Darius I is when things change. Now I see the importance of why the original proclamation made by King Cyrus was not only spoken but also written. As The Spirit of God stirred King Cyrus, right along with the stirring flowed forth wisdom. That wisdom was an equipping of what would happen later...so that when the enemy would come to attempt to cease the rebuilding of the Temple-it would be in writing what King Cyrus had also proclaimed the rebuilding of God's Temple! God is so awesome!!

When King Darius charged his men to find the scroll that King Cyrus had originally decreed; they found the scroll in the capital province of Media. As ordered by the king, they brought and read the scroll that was scribed by King Cyrus' scribe years prior. King Darius (I) commanded the very ones who tried to trouble the elders of the builders of the House of God to keep far away from there! He said, "Leave them alone!" But not only did he stop there, he also made a decree as to what should be done for the men who rebuilt the House of God. The cost of the rebuilding was to be paid in full to the men at once from the king's revenue-that they would not be hindered...I love the principle of God's provision...it is to cease hindrance! Provision ceases hindrance! It was also amazing and almost comical to see the threat of King Darius on anyone who would attempt to change or infringe on the order of the king, re-establishing the original decree of King Cyrus. The provision was met on every realm to see the rebuilding of the Temple of God...so amazing!

I love Ezra 7:10, "For Ezra had prepared and set his heart to seek the Law of the Lord [to inquire for it and of it, to require and yearn for it], and to do and teach in Israel its statutes and its ordinances." Ezra was truly a man after God's heart. He had prepared his heart on purpose to seek, inquire and yearn to please God. And as he yearned to please God he would do and teach the people of Israel what they needed to know. His passion for God's righteousness and justice is what led him away from compromise and into the fear of God.

There is so much more to be learned in the Book of Ezra. It is a great read and study to find yet again the amazing testimony of our awesome God!

I am reminded that God's provision causes hindrance to cease!
I am also reminded that the fear of God is an automatic resistance of compromising! The fear of God sees to it that compromises ceases! May we increase our prayers to God, yearning for more of Him; seeing the provision of God's timing resulting in favor leading to action with a proper attitude resulting in victory; ultimately giving glory fo Almighty God!

As Buddy shared with us on Sunday where we fellowship:
"Effectual prayers + God's Timing = Favor
Action + Proper attitude = Victory"
The results of both Favor and Victory give God the glory and honor that is God's and God's alone!



Monday, June 21, 2010

June 21, 2010, "Ezra"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

~ The Book Of Ezra ~

I began to yearn, thirst and hunger for more as Buddy spoke a message yesterday in regards to Nehemiah. I was amazed to find that Nehemiah's heart and yearning was to give glory to God in all that he did.

This hunger and thirst to have a heart like Nehemiah, led me to pray to God for a glimpse of His insight, in which I was led to first read Ezra. Have you ever read the Book of Ezra? I admit, I had not but just here and there. One thing I am learning is that the Bible is not for casual readers (as my husband says). It can be easy to take things out of context or to grab that which makes us feel good to appease that self-help humanistic ego that we tend to gravitate to by default.

I want to share as the Lord leads in parts of what I learned today. I know every moment we read this amazing written Word, which is only a tiny glimpse, we receive more and more of the amazing heart of God. I love the endless layers of wisdom that come forth every time we read.

Just take this walk with me back into history for a moment:
In the first year of King Cyrus' reign over Persia, the Spirit of God stirred up King Cyrus and with that stirring came forth a proclamation; but not only a spoken proclamation but also a written decree.
1.) In doing so he realized, remembered and reminded himself and others that God had given him all the kingdoms of the earth.
2.) He realized, remembered and reminded himself and others that God had charged him to build God a house at Jerusalem in Judah
3.) He spoke and wrote a blessing to all of God's people and then allowed the once captive children of Israel to go up to Jerusalem in Judah and rebuild the House of the Lord - to notify all and himself that God is God!
4.) There was a 'benefit package' to all the survivors of the Babylonian Captivity of the Jews that traveled to Jerusalem.
*The men of that place must assist the survivors with silver and gold ~ notice not for their own prosperity but for the glory of God.
*They were also to be assisted with goods and beasts ~ but not only that, they were also given freewill offerings (donations). For who? Themselves? No, for the House of God in Jerusalem.
5.) After the written and spoken proclamation from King Cyrus who was stirred by the Spirit of God the head men of the forefathers of Judah and Benjamin and the priests and the Levites along with all those whose spirits God had stirred up to rebuild the house of the Lord in Jerusalem.
6.) The 'bystanders' around provided them aid with the following:
*Vessels of silver
*Gold
*Goods
*Beasts and
*Precious things on top of all that was willingly and freely offered or donated.
7.) The king didn't stop at proclaiming and writing what God had stirred up in him - he then brought out the vessels of the house of the Lord, which Nebuchadnezzar had brought from Jerusalem and had put in the house of his gods.
8.) The king was organized and professional in all things (an attribute of God and who God is...the God of order). King Cyrus had his treasurer count to the governor (Zerubbabel), this is what they numbered:
*30 basins of gold
*1,000 basins of silver
* 29 sacrificial dishes
* 30 gold bowls
*410 sort of silver bowls
*1,000 other vessels
All the vessels of gold and silver were 5,400.
Now that's some major inventory!
Governor Zerubbabel brought all that was counted with the survivors of the Babylonian captivity to Jerusalem.

There were many who went into exile by King Nebuchadnezzar. In Ezra 2, you can see who all followed Zerubbabel out to rebuild the temple in Jerusalem, but then I noticed in verse 59 a very sad moment. This moment is when the captives who came from different regions when delivered into captivity; they could not show records of their genealogy, in which they were excluded from the priesthood as ceremonially unclean. The governor told them that they should not eat of the most holy things until they could find a priest with two particular stones in their breastplate (Urim and Thummim) so they could know God's will in the matter. Apparently, when the priest had these stones in their breastplates they had the capability to receive revelations from God ('seer'ic stones, Exodus 28:30) .

I could go and on with the details, but as you read the Book of Ezra, notice the provisions that were made available to them, revealing the hand of God! All of the people going with Zerubbabel were 42,360. Of course there were more which the numbers are broken down in Ezra 2:64-69.

In the seventh month, according to the Ancient Israel calendar, it would most likely be the latter part of September into the beginning of October, the people gathered together in unity as 'one man' (Ezra 3:1). Morning and evening they offered burnt offerings to the Lord and they did accordingly in regards to the Feast of Tabernacles and offered the daily burnt offerings by number according to the ordinances, as each day's duty required. They on purpose and intentionally did as the law required for they feared God! Notice the key: they feared God! Provision was constant as things were prepared, when they appointed the Levites to oversee the work of the Lord's house, and they laid the foundation of the temple of the Lord.

I love this part, they sang responsively, praising and giving thanks to the Lord, saying, For He is good, for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever toward Israel. And all teh people shouted with a great shout when they praise the Lord, because the foundation of the house of th Lord was laid! Many of the priests and Levites and heads of the fathers' houses, old men who had seen the first house [Solomon's Temple], when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, wept with a loud voice, thought many shouted aloud with joy. This part is what gets me, they were so loud both in the weeping and the joy, that you could not distinguish one from the other. They were so loud as they wept and rejoiced that their sound was heard from a great distance!

I stop here today, but I pray that you read the whole book of Ezra and not just read it, but study the amazing power of our God and how much these people reverenced Him as they utilized the riches for God's glory and did it in unity for God's glory and honor! You will be amazed of the defeats and triumph in this book alone! Tomorrow, if I am led, I will further write that which has been studied.


Saturday, June 19, 2010

June 19, 2009, "The Someone's'

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written By: Teresa Criswell

"For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope."
~ Jeremiah 29:11 ~

The 'buzzing' sounds of life all around me as I hear the many people talking amongst themselves. I walk by many people; each one a someone, a spirit made by God. They are someone that God foreknew before they were formed in their mother's womb. I stand in that moment with great conviction as I hear the question, "Do you know what I have planned for her?" "Do you know what I have planned for him?"

I ponder in amazement that the Lord would allow me to catch a glimpse of His thoughts toward the many people. I do not know their names. I do not know where they live. I do not know their dreams that have been fulfilled or dreams that seem or have been broken. The glimpsing thoughts in just that moment are incredibly overwhelming.

As the whirlwind thoughts of these people pass through me; I am reminded in an awe of gratefulness of God's great love towards all of us; even in our sin. God made The Way from death to eternal life through His Answer Jesus Christ, allowing us to abide in Him, not because of what we have or have not done; but because of who He is.

As I walk by or another person walks by me and I don't have the opportunity to speak to them; I pray that I will pray God's destiny of Salvation and passion of pursuing their King and Lord over their lives as Compassion leads me to see the thoughts that God has towards each of them.

I pray I am reminded that as He has given me much in Who He is, which is limitless, that I would stay in the position of overflow to reveal the Limitless Loving, Majestic Power of our Awesome God onto others (See video link).

Thursday, June 17, 2010

June 17, 2010, "Abba"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son in your hearts, crying out, "Abba, Father!"
~ Galatians 4:6 ~

Father God, You are my delight.
I realize my need for you even more when my wants will not satisfy this insatiable appetite.
The cravings within me only get stronger for Your glorious presence to manifest. I yearn for Your Glorious Face to shine upon who I am so that I may reveal You to those who unknowingly desire You.

I know that my flesh cannot survive your Holy presence. My flesh would melt away by Your All Consuming Glorious Fire; there's a cry on the inside O God, I need You. I need You, I want You, I desire You. I desire for Your love to penetrate the hearts of the many whose spirits long for You, even though their minds do not know the desire of their spirit that cries out for Your Holy Spirit.

I desire Your powerful testimony of grace to be revealed in my life so that others may be refreshed. Not refreshed by who I am; but refreshed by You the Constant Refreshing Source of Mercy, Love, Grace, Power, Boldness, Truth, and Wisdom! The world cannot contain all the books in the world that would attempt with great failure to describe who You are! I only have a glimpse of who You are.

Lord, my thanksgiving to You for Your glorious power that engulfs me with an embrace that cannot be described or uttered. The mute awe of my heart has no translation of Your Awesomeness! The moaning that comes forth from within and out of my mouth are humbled by who You are; Holy, Righteous, Just God!

Getting to be your daughter; the Most Famous One; I get to call You my Daddy, my Abba! O Abba! I long to smell Your fragrance; I long for You God! My physical body begins to jitter and salivate as it cannot fathom such addiction that my spirit longs for! Abba! Thank You! Thank You Father for Your glorious love! Your love for me is not based on my performance, what I am good at, or what I have or haven't done! Your love is solely based on Who You are...not who I am! But the desire to love You because of Your love is overwhelming! Your love and grace cause me to not want to disappoint You. It causes me to desire Your ways more than my own! I long for my actions to line up with my desires. I want to please You. I long to reveal my gratefulness to Who You are!

Thank You Abba!

Love your grateful daughter,
Teresa

Saturday, June 12, 2010

June 12, 2010, "Overflowing Vessel Video"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Voice: Teresa Criswell


Before watching the "Overflowing Vessel" video, please press 'pause' on my playlist which is on the bottom of the page.

"Jesus answered and said to her, "If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, 'Give Me a drink,' you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water."
~ John 4:10 ~

Friday, June 11, 2010

June 11, 2010, "My Dad"

This is a bit lengthy...but please pray for my amazing dad! He is truly my and my sister's amazing example of a glimpse of our Amazing Father God!

In regards to my dad, I am sending out a request of fervent prayer unto our Awesome God on my daddy's behalf. It is really difficult to watch your dad, so strong, who can literally do 'anything' be subject to pain that hinders him in ways that I never thought possible.

It began on Tuesday early evening when he was trimming the small bushes outside. As he bent over, his back literally gave out causing him to be face down on the ground. He was on the ground for an hour and a half and no one knew. My mom was at bible study and no one found him until a person in the neighborhood, walking their dog found my dad. He was in so much pain that the person was unable to assist him in getting up. What the kind person was able to do was get some ibuprofen and water and give it to my dad, for some relief. My dad eventually was able to crawl back to the house, but still in excruciating pain.

Mom got home and was surprised and upset to find my dad in his state of pain. Now, if you know my parents at all...you know how close they are. The only words to describe what God has put together is 'kindred souls'. It's amazing, when one is in pain, the other sympathizes. They finish each others sentences and adore each other. They are an amazing couple and will be celebrating 38 years on the 21st of this month...and they are two people that I have the privilege of calling, "my parents".

Well, the next day, I was able to get away and go to the doctor with both my parents. I didn't realize the state of pain my dad was in, until I witnessed it myself. It took much to hold back the tears, as I watched and said to myself, "That's not my dad." I knew in my spirit, that he didn't want his girls to see him in this state. He was literally bent over in pain and had to stop quite a few times because of the excruciating pain as he walked into the doctor's office. A complete stranger saw my dad's state and placed his arm around my dad and said, "Lean on me, come on, lean on me" and the gentleman assisted my dad into the doctor's office. Amazing!

I give you a little bit of the story of what I witnessed so that you may understand what my dad has been going through. He will try to say to others that he's fine...he is so stubborn in that way. He doesn't want anyone worried or concerned over him.

Well, this morning, I awoke with the following declaration:
"ENOUGH! In the name of Jesus we call the degenerative bones to regenerate NOW over my dad in the Name of Jesus! I speak by great faith in my God, You are the Healer, to replace the pain with soothing relief coupled with miraculous healing over my daddy's nerves, L4 and L5 discs and inflammation go down now in the Name of Jesus! Lord, I thank You that You are the God that heals. It is not our Faith...it is Your Faith that we utilize as a tool and connect with belief in our hearts that You are the Almighty Healer! Father, I thank You for your amazing power to go through my dad's body, causing abundant life by the Blood of Jesus to cause restoration and wholeness to annihilate his bones, cartilage, muscles, nerves and anything else that we don't know what to pray for in the Name of Jesus. Just as the allegory of the re-birth of the eagle that has go to the mountain top and pull out it's talons, pull out his feathers and beat it's beak to the rock; the newness comes forth 150 days later as new talons, new feathers and a new beak come forth, causing it to become like a young eagle again; adding 30 more years of an abundant life. Lord, I don't know if that story is true or false, but Father I love the parable. Lord, I pray the same re-birth that has taken place in my dad's spirit because of Jesus Christ, that this same power that raised Jesus from the dead, would annihilate and overwhelm my dad's physical body in the Name of Jesus! I pray in this moment of forceful rest; that he become stronger than before, that there would be a great source of Your energy and power to come forth upon, in and out of his body and with long life You satisfy my daddy! Thank You Lord in advance in my realm of boundaries, time restraints that we will see great abundant life in every part of my dad's life, as we already see in his life spiritually, mentally, monetarily and we speak that forth over his physical body. Lord, what I saw with my physical eyes tries to get me to use the tool of doubt from the enemy...but Lord, I know You are more powerful and in Jesus name I utilize the eyes of faith that you have bestowed upon me and in Jesus name I see my dad healed, whole and restored even more so than what I could ever imagine in Your majestic, Holy, most powerful name....the Name of Jesus!"

Thank you for agreeing with me and please leave a comment for my dad so that I may forward it onto him, to encourage him...it would be greatly appreciated! If you don't have a user id...just go to the drop down arrow and click on 'Anonymous' and you should be able to leave a comment with no hindrances.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

June 10, 2010, "Grace of God, So Beautiful"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written By: Teresa Criswell

"And the hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number believed and turned to the Lord. Then news of these things came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent out Barnabas to go as far as Antioch. When he came and had seen the grace of God, he was glad, and encouraged them all that with purpose of heart they should continue with the Lord."
~ Acts 11:22-25 NKJV ~

God is so awesome!

His love is never ending, nor His grace and mercy!

Let us never mistaken however, that He is worthy to be praised. His mercies should never be mistaken to take for granted nor take advantage of.

His forgiveness is overwhelming, yet we must be reminded that His grace allows us to rise above sin!

I love that everything He calls us to; He never calls us to do His purposeful plans on our own. He has equipped us with His matchless grace! Notice that self-reliance is never something God has called us to; He has called us to become God-reliant in order that we cling to Him in all that we do with Him!

Self-reliance leads us to the destructive path to the pit of pride. However, look at the beautiful reliance on our God, that reliance leads us to the beautiful path of abundant life in and through Jesus Christ! We must lean on Him in prayer, praise, and adoration!

I am reminded that His beautiful grace is to equip us to rise above temptation and sin and rely on Him in all things...Teresa...all things (I'm preaching to myself...haahaa)!

Monday, June 7, 2010

June 7, 2010, "The Holy Spirit as revealed in the Book of Acts"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written By: Teresa Criswell

~ Acts 2:1-12; Acts 8:1-24 ~

I love the Book of Acts. Reading it this morning after praying for wisdom and understanding of our God, I noticed something quite interesting. After the Holy Spirit came upon the Jews in Jerusalem, the manifestation was that they could speak in other 'tongues' or known languages (Acts 2:4-12). The purpose of this manifestation is quite clear in Acts 2; to share the Gospel of the Infallible Truth of God through Jesus. Jesus said that they were to go into all the parts of the earth to proclaim the gospel...and they were equipped to do so. For some reason it had not occurred to me the depth of God's equipping power. A part of His equipping power was to overcome a big obstacle between the human race...language barriers. I am reminded yet again that we know that God has His perfect purpose for His gifts. They are not to be utilized with carelessness but with His great purpose.

Later as recorded in the Book of Acts chapter 8; the Samaritans accepted and welcomed the Word of God. As they accepted and welcomed the Word of God, Peter and John were sent to them. So Peter and John came down and they prayed for them that the Samaritans might receive the Holy Spirit. What caught me off guard today, was that the Holy Spirit had not yet fallen upon any of them, but they had only been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. After praying, the apostles laid their hands on them one by one, and they received the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:12-18). Wow! The importance of the laying on of hands to impart such power, revealing the baptism of Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit and fire (Matthew 3:11, Luke 3:16).

As I read the passages in Acts, I was truly enlightened to three specific things:
1.) According to Acts 2:5-12, The Holy Spirit's purpose of 'tongues' is to minister to those in their native tongue to understand, accept, believe and welcome the message of the Kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ.

2.) Upon believing, it is important to be baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus (Acts 8:16).

3.) Those who have the Holy Spirit, pray for those who believe in Jesus and then lay hands on them that they also may receive the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:17).

Upon this enlightenment, I noticed this well known man named Simon as recorded in
Acts 8:9-24. He had formerly been practicing magic arts in the city of the Samaritan nation. He had promoted himself to be this extraordinary and distinguished person. However, despite all that he had done, the Samaritans were much more impressed with the kingdom of God. Upon that impression they believed and were baptized. I am so grateful for the reminder of Simon the magician. He himself believed in the good news about the kingdom and the name of Jesus Christ, was also baptized and devoted himself constantly to Philip (Acts 8:12-13). He witnessed signs and miracles of great power which were performed and he was amazed (Acts 8:13). Yet, later as the apostles prayed for the Samaritans to receive the Holy Spirit, they laid hands on them one by one and they received the Holy Spirit. I can imagine Simon drouling as he saw that this is how the Holy Spirit was imparted by the laying on of hands, he revealed his heart as he brought money and offered it to the apostles. He wanted this power and authority so that whomever he laid his hands on would receive the Holy Spirit. Yet, Peter rebukes him, tears him apart to actually think that the free gift of God could be attained with money. Peter rebukes him even further and as Simon revealed his own heart, Peter proclaims how his heart is all wrong in God's sight. Peter goes on to tell Simon to repent of the wickedness, and pray to the Lord that, if possible, this thought and purpose of his heart be forgiven him. Simon asks Peter to pray for him that none of what Peter says shall come upon him.

Upon stopping there to imagine this moment. I am in awe of Simon's reaction. Wow! Simon reveals his repentance by not walking away offended, but he begs Peter to pray for him (Acts 8:24). I am amazed by Simon's reaction. He could have easily turned away in his wickedness. Yet the truth that cut beyond the bone, Simon was having a heart change at that very moment. I praise God for the boldness of the Holy Spirit that Peter walked in, freeing Simon from his wicked heart. If he would have proceeded without Peter's rebuke, Simon would have restricted freedom of those who would later believe in Jesus. Peter said, "For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and in a bond forged by iniquity [to fetter souls]." Fetter is defined as: a chain or shackle for the ankles or feet. Something that serves to restrict; restrain. The verb is to restrict the freedom of.

Praise God for His boldness through the Holy Spirit. When we are rebuked by the Spirit of God through a vessel, may we forsake offense and receive the gift of correction that our soul may be freed, not restrained and held in bondage to deception.

Friday, June 4, 2010

June 4, 2010, "Revealing the Rescuer"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

~ Matthew 28:19-20 ~

Yesterday, the following plea came out of my spirit..."Lord, I no longer want to reveal myself to others...I only want to reveal You." As I thought about this seemingly impossible plea that was not my own, I was reminded that my Rescuer does not want me to reveal the rescued one (me); but He longs for me to reveal Him, The Rescuer. The story of my rescue is not my testimony but God's and His alone!

I have heard some say with great intentions, "Teresa, your heart for others is lovely." But I am reminded that it is not my heart for others; it is the heart of our awesome God that is compassionate, longing to touch, embrace, heal, transform, deliver and resurrect!

I am longing to get back to the powerful basics of the mandate that is on each of our lives...to spread the Gospel of our God through Jesus Christ by the power and boldness of the Holy Spirit. The mandate is not to 'fill' the seats of the pew; it is to be a part of growing the Family of God through Salvation, discipling, teaching and training what Jesus taught and baptizing them in the name of the Father, The Son and the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19-20). The pews can get filled but are the hearts of the people in the pews getting filled with the Hope of Glory? Jesus Christ is the only Hope to have a relationship with our awesome God Who is revealed by the Holy Spirit of God!

The glorious transformation reveals our Rescuer. As we reveal our Rescuer there is a longing for Him that is indescribable. As we indescribably long for Him, we long for what He longs for...and that is to remember that to much is given; much is required.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

June 1, 2010, "More Concerned About the Reputation of God"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

Numbers 13 & 14
What I have written is a bit lengthy...but please read...I believe you will be blessed as I was.

As I was preparing to teach the children on Sunday, I was inspired as I read Numbers 13 & 14. I have heard and read the message of the twelve scouts many times. However, little did I know what I was about to learn!

Before preparing, I was outside listening to the 'music' of nature as I heard the birds singing. I sat at my picnic table on the back patio, and went to the Lord in humble adoration. I prayed for His insight and a glimpse of what He wanted me to learn. As I prayed this prayer, I was beyond blessed to catch another glimpse of our glorious God and his servant, Moses.

First of all, Moses by the leading of God, directed the 12 scouts to the following instructions (The twelve scouts that were appointed were the heads of each of their tribes, Moses called Joshua which was of the tribe of Ephraim):
1.) Get up this way by the South and go up into the hill country
(This revealed that most likely there may have been another route to get to the Land of Canaan, however, God was very specific as to the direction they were to go).
2.) See if the people who dwell there are strong or weak
3.) See if the people are few or many
4.) See if the land they live in is good or bad
5.) See if the cities they dwell in are camps or strongholds
6.) See if the land is fat or lean
7.) See if the land has timber on it or not
8.) Be of good courage
9.) Bring some of the fruit of the land

After the scouts went into the land of Canaan, many of us know what took place. They did everything they were instructed to do. However, the only instruction the 10 scouts did not adhere to was number eight...Be of good courage, the most important instruction of all. The ten out of the twelve scouts came back and reported of the Nephilim (giants) to all of the people with great distress. To give us an idea of the strong giants (which were of the mingling of fallen angels and human women), one cluster of grapes that were carried back had to be carried on a pole by two men...one cluster of grapes...think about that...that is massive...yet even in that...instruction #8 was the most important...BE OF GOOD COURAGE!

I try to imagine vs. 33 of chapter 13. "We were in our own sight as grasshoppers..." This was a fact according to the instruction given. Remember, they were to report back to see if they were strong or weak. Yet, even in that 'fact'...instruction #8 was still the most important...BE OF GOOD COURAGE!

After the grumbling and complaining as recorded in chapter 14, Moses and Aaron fell on their faces before all the people. Joshua and Caleb (the two out of the 12 scouts) were among the scouts and they tore their clothes. I imagine they yelled at all of the people, "The land through which we passed as scouts is an exceedingly good land. If the Lord delights in us, then He will bring us into this land of and give it to us, a land flowing with milk and honey. Do not rebel against the Lord, neither fear the people, for they are the ones who God will use to provide for us. The Lord is with us. Fear them not."

Then after this pleading God's anger was provoked by the lack of Trust from the people. Did they already forget what He had done and provided. God said to Moses, "I will smite them with pestilence and disinherit them, and will make of you (Moses) a nation greater and mightier than they."

Wow! God promises Moses that he will make him a nation greater and mightier...but watch Moses' response: "What about the ones who have heard of You Lord and your Deliverance over these people. The people of Egypt and in other lands have heard what you have done. You were their Cloud by Day and Pillar of Fire by night. Now if you kill all these people as one man, then the nations that have heard your fame will say, "God was unable to deliver them out of the wilderness. God, I pray let the power of You Lord be great, as You have promised. Lord, you are long suffering and slow to anger, and abundant in mercy and loving-kindness, forgiving sin and transgression...pardon, I pray You the sin of this people according to Your loving-kindness, just as You have forgiven them from Egypt until now."

After hearing this pleading of the people's pardon from Moses, God says, "I have pardoned according to your word." Wow! I wondered, was this a test of Moses' character? Well, he definitely passed, wouldn't you say?

As I read the history of this amazing story, I realized that even after God promised Moses that He would make him a nation greater and mightier than them, Moses response was amazing (Numbers 14:14-20). Moses could have cared less about making him a greater nation; he wanted God to be reminded of His own loving-kindness and mercies toward His people. Moses cared more for the people even in their selfish groanings. Yet, even more than this, what causes me to shake my head in awe is that Moses cared more about the reputation of God than himself! I have to write it again, Moses cared more about the reputation of God than himself! Wow!

I am reminded that I must yearn to know my God as Moses did. To yearn with compassion for others more than myself; yet even more than that, caring more about the reputation of my God than myself.