Thursday, April 21, 2011

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

"Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!"
~ Psalm 46:10 ~

I'm driving with the harmonious flow of traffic when my mind takes me to the place in which my destination lies. The destination has me excited as I look forward to surprising my sister who lives in another city. I was imagining the stunned look of surprise on her face as I thought of the different, outrageous ways I could surprise her. Suddenly, my imagination was interrupted as I came back to real time, which was driving, slamming on my brakes as the flow of traffic came to a complete hault.

I felt that tinge of panic go through my body when I noticed the cars that were ahead of me, a few of them were actually turning around. It made me think, "How long have they been sitting in traffic?"

I was subtly being moved by what I saw at that very moment. I was moved by the many cars as far as I could see and we were barely moving; let me just say this, we weren't even crawling. The move to do what the others were doing became quite tempting, hearing in my head, "O, just turn around".

As I entertained the thought, I came to reality within a few seconds saying to myself,
"If I turned around, What road would I take?
I don't know an alternate route to the interstate."

In that moment, I felt as though I could hear the following sentence, "The traffic will clear in a few minutes, just wait. If you turn around, what you think is progress will actually be disguised as delay."

This situation caused me to think of when I'm moved by the easy flow of traffic in life.

Everything is going as planned, we will get there at this time, at this age, at this place and then *BAM* it never fails, what I planned it's knocked off course and an obstacle gets in the way.

We become moved by the traffic flow, versus being focused on God who leads us to our destination. When the circumstances of life seem to come to a complete hault, we begin to see people scrambling to action being led by fear of lack and the absence of what seems like no flow. Instead, I realized before I spring to action, I must bow my knees and my will to the Wisdom of God that will reveal His plan, reminding me that by waiting, I will get through, listening to the still small voice and remembering, "If I am still, I will know that He is God."

I am reminded yet again,'if' I do it, determines what I truly will see and experience and that experience is knowing that He is God! I no longer want to be moved by the ones who turn around because it seems everything has come to a screeching hault, but I only want to be moved by the One Who allows me to turn to Him.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

April 17, 2011, "My Kindred Spirit and Sister Whom I have Never Met"

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

My friend Julie walked into my house, placed a book on my counter and giggled. With excitement when I realized what book it was I burst forth with gratefulness! Embracing my friend who loves me so much, I ended up getting so excited I attempted to climb her as though she was a tree and I was a monkey! Yes, classy I know, but hey, I couldn't hold in the excitement!

Anyways, the past couple of days, I have been drawn to the author of this book. Little did I know the history of the book or the author whose name was L.B. Cowman. She lived in the late 1800's through the early 1900's.

The book is called, Streams In The Desert. To read a brief history of how the book came about was during a time of sadness and watching her husband over six years slowly slip away until he passed away. This book sprang forth during L.B.'s time of heartbreaking experiences. She was a passionate woman after the heart of God and this book reveals her passion for God so beautifully. Her book was published in 1925 two years before the famous Oswald Chambers had his book, My Utmost For His Highest published in 1927.

Being that their manuscripts were written in 'raw' English, Jim Reimann with the power of the Holy Spirit was able to translate these books into a modern, easy-to-understand language that brings forth abundant power, bringing the words of the original authors back to life, as though we can hear L.B. Cowman's and Oswald Chambers voices in this dimension of time.

Today, I desire to share an excerpt from "Streams In The Desert" from February 20th. The following excerpt jumped from the pages as confirmation to what I have been hearing in my spirit for the past couple of years:
"We are able to have as much of God as we want. Christ puts the key to the treasure chest in our hands and invites us to take all we desire. If someone is allowed into a bank vault, told to help himself to the money, and leaves without one cent, whose fault is it if he remains poor? And whose fault is it that Christians usually have such meager portions of the free riches of God?"
Alexander Maclaren

This is so powerfully written and said. When I read this over and over again, it made me thirst for The Living Waters more than I could have ever imagined.

I urge all of us to thirst, pant, and drool for Jesus Who is The Living Water, revealed by the powerful Holy Spirit of God. This Fresh Water will never run out. Don't just get splashed and run away; be drenched. Hold out your arms, lift up your head, stick out your tongue and bask in the powerful burst of effervescent waters that spring forth from the Holy Spirit of God! Let us saturate, soak and bring others to the fountain of Living Waters, hearing the giggles of joy no matter the circumstances of life, for He is God and there is no one else like Him!

Julie, thank you for your sensitivity to the Lord's bidding to introduce me to L.B. Cowman. I am in awe of a sister in Christ whom I have never met, yet even so, L.B. Cowman is my kindred spirit and sister in Christ. I long to love my Father God as she did. What I love about L.B. the most is that her writings did NOT ask the universal question, "Why me, Lord?" Instead the passionate question revealed in her writings were this, "How deep can I go with You Lord?"

Her writings revealed her unwavering faith when everything else was shakeable, her faith remained unshakeable in our Awesome,Indescribably, Unshakeable God!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

"I Don't Know How...But I know WHO"

"Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path."
~ Psalm 119:105 ~

I was overwhelmed by the Greatness of our Awesome, Incredbily Powerful God as I read Exodus 14!

Are you ready for this?
No really...this question I ask is not a cliche.
Are you truly ready for this?

Can you imagine 600, yes 600 of the best chariots and then some more chariots along with horses, horsemen and troops pursuing you?
What about the mighty sound that would echo and quake the earth below you as you tried with great effort to run from death that seemed to be approaching at great acceleration?

What if in that moment you were told, "Do not be afraid"? If we're told 'not' to do something, we normally do it, don't we?
The 'carnal me' would say with my finger waving, "Excuse me? Do you not see what I see?"
Yet, this very statement was made through the mouth of Moses. He said, "Do not be afraid..." after the Israelites were filled with fear and despair of what they saw overtaking them, they said, "Were there not graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert to die? What have you done to us?" (Exodus 14:11-12).

I burst out laughing when I read what they said. I felt so bad for Moses. He had to lead these complaining, unbelieving murmurers. Yet, it is a reminder that even today, we are no different, if we aren't careful.

There are some things I noticed as I read chapter 14:
1.) God commanded Moses to ensure the Israelites were in a specific geographical location (vs. 1- 2.)
2.) God knew Pharaoh's thoughts (vs. 3).
3.) God has the ability to harden and soften hearts as he did with Pharaoah(vs. 4).
4.) God will receive the glory for Himself so that they will know that He is The Lord. (vs. 4).
5.) God used the mighty things of this earth, with the best military as referenced in this chapter and made it into nothing in comparison to Who He is and what He is clearly and indescribably able to do (vs. 9 and I Corinthians 1:18-21).
6.) God appointed a leader who knew that to fear the Lord was far better than the justifiable fears of death. Moses knew God so well and said, "Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring to you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still" (vs. 13 & 14).
7.) God told Moses the what and the how (vs. 15-16).
8.) God's angel who had been traveling in front of the Israelites withdrew and went behind them (vs. 19 and reminds me of Isaiah 58:8).
9.) The pillar of cloud also moved from in front and stood behind them (vs. 19).
10.) The Israelites crossed over all night long (21).
11.) At daybreak the sea went back to its place when Moses had done what the Lord commanded him to do (vs. 26-27).
12.) Not one of the enemies survived (vs. 28).
13.) The Israelites saw the incredible power of God (vs. 31).
14.) The Israelites feared the Lord (vs. 31), not only with a 'cliche'ish' reverential fear, but a fear that would cause us to die if we saw God in ALL His glorious power. Truly an 'afraid' fear.

Can you imagine seeing the majesty of God in ALL His glory? No wonder everytime an angel of God came to someone, they would say, "Do not be afraid". The encounter of seeing a mighty angel would cause anyone to be scared. Now, that is just an angel we're talking about ~ now what about God Himself? Wow! When our circumstances are crying out, "Lack, lack, lack" "Death, death, death" May we shout back, "I don't know how, but I know WHO will deliver me to victory and He will lead us to the how."

Notice when you unscramble the word 'how', it turns into WHO! Haahaa! I got that this morning...silly, I know, but it got me good! I pray you're 'gotten' and smitten by our Incredibly, Awesome, All-Powerful God! Let us remember with great passion to Whom we get to serve!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

April 5, 2011, Do you know?

Triumphant Victorious Reminders Inspired by the Holy Spirit Written by: Teresa Criswell Do you know that God is Enthralled by Your Beauty? Please click here to find out more...

Monday, April 4, 2011

April 4, 2011, "Declarations of Awe"

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

"Then Hannah prayed and said: My heart rejoices in the Lord; in the Lord my horn is lifted high. My mouth boasts over my enemies, for I delight in your deliverance. There is no one holy like the LORD; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God..."
~ I Samuel 2:1-2 ~

Father God, in the Name of Jesus You are highly exalted.
Without Your Holy Spirit I cannot declare the applauding unctions that desire to flow from my belly like a rushing river that has been held back by the 'dam' of my humanity.

My desperate declaration is the same as Hannah's:
There is no one like one besides YOU!
No one! No one! No one!

I praise You Father for You are beyond Glorious,
the heavens dare not contain Your glory!
I laugh in awe as I have attempted with great failure to contain You
for my mind cannot fathom such a Mighty God!

Creation declares Your glory.
Creation brags about Who You are.
Creation proclaims the Glory of You The Creator.
Creation broadcasts for all to see the glimpses of Your Majesty.
The moon, the stars, the galaxies reveal a glimpse of You;
The Most Glorious One.
You considered the moon and the stars and O how they consider You.

God! You are patiently merciful.
Your grace equips us to overcome!
Your mercy equips us to live when we deserve destruction!
Your love overwhelms.
Your love reveals You.
God! You are amazingly incredible;
indescribably overwhelmed by You, I sit here in awe.

My mind cannot wrap around such beauty revealed by You.
My mind is powerful, yet even its power it can not behold the incomprehensible YOU! You were there when...
You were there when I attempted to deceive myself that I was all alone.
You are here.
Your presence I cannot escape.
I love you my Father.
I love you my God.
I love you The Most Famous One!

Thank you for pulling me out of the pit of prositution.
Thank you for pulling me out of the pit of despair.
Thank you for pulling me out of myself.
To be healed I had to turn from me and desperately had to turn my face towards YOU.

When I focus on me, my heart will only grow colder.
Yet, the anecdote to refocus is to remain fixed on you.
I mess it all up; and yet You the Redeemer, redeems me from me.
You are Redeemer, you cannot help but redeem.
You are Creator, you cannot help but to constantly create.
You do not grow weary.
You hold fast and You are full of faith towards each of wonder you are called FAITHFUL!

I am Your daughter and You are my King and to You I am grateful!

Scripture References:
I Kings 8:27
II Chronicles 2:6
II Chronicles 6:18
Psalm 8
Psalm 40:2
II Timothy 2:13