Monday, November 26, 2018

Refresh Your Soul - Part 1

Hello everyone,

When worrying thoughts bombard your mind and threaten to pull you down into despair, you have a powerful weapon that will abruptly interrupt their course and declare the perfect will of God directly into the situation that is overwhelming you.  That weapon is praying in the Holy Ghost and as you use it, God’s Spirit prays through your spirit and redeems your soul out of all distress.

1 Corinthians 14:4 says that when we pray in unknown tongues we edify and improve ourselves. That means we build up and improve the current state of our souls.  Now the soul is made of three distinct parts: The part of the mind where we think and reason; the part that acts as our will and the part where our emotions operate from.  All these areas are positively affected when we pray in the Holy Ghost.

Jude 1:20 says, “But you, beloved, build yourselves up [founded] on your most holy faith [make progress, rise like an edifice higher and higher], praying in the Holy Spirit;”.

Why would a born again believer need to have their souls built up and encouraged?  Well, the Word of God teaches us that we have an enemy, the devil, who has made it his business to steal, kill and destroy every bit of faith, hope, peace and joy we have in this life (John 10:10).  

Now we know the finished work of the cross has disarmed him and prevented him from harming us - take a look at Colossians 2:15, “[God] disarmed the principalities and powers that were ranged against us and made a bold display and public example of them, in triumphing over them in Him and in it [the cross].”  

The fact is, even though the devil has been defeated, he has a deceptive and criminal nature, and will not stop trying to destroy the life and victory we have in Christ Jesus.  While he can distract our minds with negative, worrisome thoughts, he can keep our souls in a place of troubled anguish and defeat.

But the devil isn’t the only cause of our souls being troubled.  When we make wrong choices in life or react incorrectly to circumstances through shock or hurt, or disappointment, we can cause a ripple of events that lead to our minds being trapped in turmoil, resentment and bitterness.

So how do we pull our souls out of this downward, destructive spiral and into refreshing peace?  The answer is simple - we must get them into a place where the truth of God’s Word is more dominant than any other voice we are hearing.  We have to choose to cast out all thoughts that bring anxiety and panic before fear has a chance to neutralise our faith.  

As impossible as this may seem, we really can do it. Jesus said He has already overcome every opposing force or stressful trial we will ever face in this life, regardless of its source.  Take a look at  John 16:33, “I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]”

In order to rescue our troubled souls and bring them into a place of refreshing and victory, we must have the Word of God dominate them.  And not just any word, the most appropriate word for our situation is what will give our minds victory over distress.  Take a look at what Psalms 119:81 says, “My soul languishes and grows faint for Your salvation, but I hope in Your word.”  

Psalms 94:19 says, “In the multitude of my [anxious] thoughts within me, Your comforts cheer and delight my soul!”

You may wonder what this has to do with praying in the Holy Spirit. Well, understand that praying in the Holy Spirit stops our prayers from being influenced by our own limited intellect, that has certainly been negatively affected by our anxious emotions.  

Instead, we are having the Spirit of God speak His perfect will, peace and power over us and into our situations.  It’s perfect because it has no trace of fear or doubt, only creative power to speak into existence what His Word has promised us.  What’s more, our own spirits are in complete harmony and agreement with God’s, which energises and stirs up a mighty inner strength inside us.

That’s what Ephesians 1:19 & 20 speaks about, “And [so that you can know and understand] what is the immeasurable and unlimited and surpassing greatness of His power in and for us who believe, as demonstrated in the working of His mighty strength,...Now to Him Who, by the [action of His] power that is at work within us, is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly, far over and above all that we [dare] ask or think [infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes, or dreams]...”

Until next week, spend time praying in the Holy Spirit and let His Presence which is at work within you refresh and restore your soul. 

Much love,


Sunday, November 18, 2018

Evidence of His Power in You

Hello everyone,

The baptism of the Holy Spirit is a precious gift for every born-again believer and is essential for us to live out our Christian faith purposefully and victoriously.  As we study the scriptures, we see how speaking in tongues, which is a personal, heavenly, prayer language is available for every Believer who is baptised in the Holy Spirit.  There are such amazing benefits for those who regularly spend time praying in their heavenly language, in fact they are so wonderful that we simply cannot ignore the importance of this precious gift.  

Regardless of the denomination to which you belong or what you have been taught to believe, it is an irrefutable fact that Jesus said believers would speak with new tongues.  Jesus said in Mark 16:17, “And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues;”.

Today we are going to look at one of the benefits of praying in tongues which is the fact that it provides evidence that we are filled with the supernatural power of God!

As a born-again child of God, your body has become the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit!   1 Corinthians 6:19 says, “Do you not know that your body is the temple (the very sanctuary) of the Holy Spirit Who lives within you, Whom you have received [as a Gift] from God? You are not your own,”.

1 Corinthians 6:17 says, “But the person who is united to the Lord becomes one spirit with Him.”  This means your spirit and His Holy Spirit have become one!  At the point of your conversion, the Holy Spirit took your human spirit which was lost to sin, and recreated it in Himself!  2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!”

Then, as I explained in the previous letter, every child of God can receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  This is where we ask the Holy Spirit to fill us up and activate us with His power.  It’s important to note that when we become born again, the Holy Spirit does take up residency in us, and promises to remain in us.  He doesn’t leave us.  However, to activate His power to flow in and through us - to do what is naturally not possible to do, we need the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  

Look at what John the Baptist said about Jesus,  John 1:32-34, “John gave further evidence, saying, I have seen the Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven, and it dwelt on Him [never to depart].  And I did not know Him nor recognize Him, but He Who sent me to baptizein (with) water said to me, Upon Him Whom you shall see the Spirit descend and remain, that One is He Who baptizes with the Holy Spirit. And I have seen [that happen—I actually did see it] and my testimony is that this is the Son of God!”  
The Holy Spirit empowered Jesus to operate supernaturally from that moment on.  His power flowed through Jesus as He worked signs, wonders and miracles.  It also gave Him the power to withstand the temptation and attack of the enemy.  

Luke 4:1, “THEN JESUS, full of and controlled by the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led in [by] the [Holy] Spirit.”  Jesus was then led by the Holy Spirt into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.  Because the Holy Spirit gave Him the appropriate word to respond every time, He stood up to the devil and overcame every temptation and trap he had laid out for Him.  This is important for us to pay attention to, because when we are baptised in the Holy Spirit, we are given the same power to overcome every trap and temptation the enemy has laid up for us.

Look at what happened next:  
Luke 4:14, 17-19, “Then Jesus went back full of and under the power of the [Holy] Spirit into Galilee, and the fame of Him spread through the whole region round about....And there was handed to Him [the roll of] the book of the prophet Isaiah. He opened (unrolled) the book and found the place where it was written,
The Spirit of the Lord [is] upon Me, because He has anointed Me [the Anointed One, the Messiah] to preach the good news (the Gospel) to the poor; He has sent Me to announce release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to send forth as delivered those who are oppressed [who are downtrodden, bruised, crushed, and broken down by calamity],
To proclaim the accepted and acceptable year of the Lord [the daywhen salvation and the free favors of God profusely abound].”

Just as the Holy Spirit empowered Jesus to do all this, the baptism of the Holy Spirit we receive empowers us to do the very same!

A wonderful way to understand this is by looking at what the Word baptism means.   It comes from the Greek Word baptizo meaning to fully submerge.  It gives a picture of a piece of cloth being fully submerged into a container that is filled with a solution of water and dye.  Once that cloth is completely soaked in that solution, it has been baptised in it.  When that cloth is lifted out of that solution, it has taken of the exact colour, and even smell of what saturated it. 

When we are baptised with the Holy Spirit, our spirits are literally saturated and soaked in His power.  We are full of and activated by power to do the very same supernatural works Jesus did.  In John 14:12 Jesus said, “I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, if anyone steadfastly believes in Me, he will himself be able to do the things that I do; and he will do even greater things than these, because I go to the Father.”  Jesus knew that only once He left the earth to go to His Father, the Holy Spirit would be able to inhabit the lives of those who believed in and accepted Jesus as their Saviour.

Once we are baptised in the Holy Spirit, being filled with His power is something that is not just done once and never again.  In fact the Bible tells us to continue being filled with His power.  Ephesians 5:18 says, “And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery; but ever be filled and stimulated with the [Holy] Spirit.”  Every time we need a fresh empowerment of the Holy Spirit’s power to spiritually strengthen and energise us, we can use our faith and ask the Holy Spirit to fill us full of a fresh empowering of His supernatural power.  In fact it’s something that is expected of us, not just suggested.  

Speaking in tongues is evidence that we have been baptised and filled with the power of God.  It’s proof that our bodies are wholly filled and flooded with that power. 

Ephesians 1:19 says that we can know and understand the, “...immeasurable and unlimited and surpassing greatness of His power in and for us who believe, as demonstrated in the working of His mighty strength,...”.  

Ephesians 3:19 speaks of how we are, “...filled [through all our being]unto all the fullness of God [may have the richest measure of the divine Presence, and become a body wholly filled and flooded with God Himself]!”  

Every time we pray in tongues we are reminded of and have evidence of how our frail human bodies hold within them a treasure that is so powerful and glorious, it cannot be kept for just ourselves!  The power of God that is in us empowers us to do His will and carry out His purpose supernaturally while we are on this earth.

2 Corinthians 4:7 says, “However, we possess this precious treasure [the divine Light of the Gospel] in [frail, human] vessels of earth, that the grandeur and exceeding greatness of the power may be shown to be from God and not from ourselves.

What a glorious gift we have to constantly remind us of the power that resides inside us.  This heavenly language is pure evidence of that resident power.  

Next week I’ll speak about another benefit Speaking in Tongues holds for us.  Until then, pray in the Holy Spirit and be reminded of that power that is flowing in and through you!

Much love,


Monday, November 12, 2018

Benefits of Speaking in Tongues

Hello everyone,

The other morning while spending time with the Lord, two words rose up in my spirit: ‘PURPOSE’ and ‘POWER’. I believe that everything we receive from the Lord, whether it’s the truth from His written word, His refreshing presence or a spontaneous message He speaks into our spirits, it is always for the specific purpose of manifesting His power in our lives.

Not one moment we spend in the presence of the Lord is insignificant. Not one word of truth is only for our general knowledge. That’s because every word from God has the power to perform what it says. Isaiah 55:11 tells us that every word from God, whether written or spontaneous, is truth and is empowered to produce exactly what it says in our lives.

For instance, God’s Word says that Jesus died and rose again to become our Saviour. That truth is not meant to be just head knowledge; we are meant to believe it with our hearts, let it be the confession of our mouths and by faith, we literally receive Him as our Saviour; knowing and experiencing Him in a very real and personal way. The same is true when the word says Jesus is our Healer. Those words are meant to become our reality, where we don’t just know about the Healer, we experience Him as our Healer and our Provider and everything else the Bible says He is to us.

Essentially, everything about God and His Word is meant to be transferred to us to not just know about, but personally experience. And this is all done by the work of the Holy Spirit. We can never over-emphasise the importance of His role in the life of a believer!

Take a look at what Jesus says about the Holy Spirit in John 16:13-15:
“But when He, the Spirit of Truth (the Truth-giving Spirit) comes, He will guide you into all the Truth (the whole, full Truth). For He will not speak His own message [on His own authority]; but He will tell whatever He hears [from the Father; He will give the message that has been given to Him], and He will announce and declare to you the things that are to come [that will happen in the future].
He will honour and glorify Me, because He will take of (receive, draw upon) what is Mine and will reveal (declare, disclose, transmit) it to you.
Everything that the Father has is Mine. That is what I meant when I said that He [the Spirit] will take the things that are Mine and will reveal (declare, disclose, transmit) it to you.”  

Jesus said everything that the Father has belongs to Him, and the Holy Spirit will take it all and disclose and transmit it to us. What a powerful promise! Everything that comes to us from God is done by the Person of Holy Spirit!

Just as a side thought, I did have someone tell me that it’s dangerous to put too much emphasis on the Holy Spirit to the point we don’t make Jesus the focus of our faith.  The truth is, it’s impossible to do that because the function of the Holy Spirit is to glorify and honour Jesus.  That means, wherever the Holy Spirit is appreciated, Jesus is glorified because He immediately places all attention on Him.  When we experience the tangible presence of the Holy Spirit, all we can focus on is Jesus.

Anyone who reads the Bible will see the absolute importance Jesus places on every believer being baptised in the Holy Spirit directly after receiving our salvation. In Acts 2 we read how He insisted that after His ascension, the disciples go to the upper room in Jerusalem and wait for the Holy Spirit to baptise them in power before they do anything. They were to wait to be filled with power that would enable them to carry out the Gospel, first to their own land and then to the surrounding nations of the earth. The baptism of the Holy Spirit was so significant because it completely filled and flooded each believer with the miracle-working power of God, where they would be able to not just do the works Jesus did, but greater works would be done since every believer would be empowered - compared to just one man. And the evidence of this baptism of the Holy Spirit would be speaking in tongues. In fact: every single believer, who was in that upper room that day, received the baptism of the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues - without exception.

This is by no means the only time we see this happen in the New Testament church. In the 8th chapter of Acts, we see Philip leave Jerusalem and travel to Samaria. Here, with the boldness he received from being baptised in the Holy Spirit, he leads many to the Lord, lays hands on them to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and all receive the evidence of it by speaking in tongues. In the 9th chapter of Acts we see Saul of Tarsus have an encounter with Jesus, and Ananias is led by the Holy Spirit to lay hands on Him to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues. Later, in the book of 1 Corinthians, Paul urges all believers to speak in tongues, saying that he is sure he speaks in his heavenly language more than all - because he knows the powerful benefits it holds for every believer.

In Acts chapter 19, we read how Paul traveled to Ephesus and found some disciples there.  He asked them is they had been baptised in the Holy Spirit.  They had only being baptised by John the Baptist and didn’t even know about the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  To this Paul showed them how to become born-again and baptised them in the Name of Jesus Christ, laid hands on them to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit and each one of them were given the evidence of that baptism by speaking in other tongues.  From that day on the church of Ephesus began to grow and become productive for the kingdom of God because of the boldness and power of the Holy Spirit that resided in those believers.

There are so many accounts in the New Testament where we read of believers being baptised in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues and the supernatural power that consistently follows their preaching of the Word. Even after the original apostles had gone from the earth, church history has been significantly marked by believers who are baptised in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues, with the demonstration of signs, wonders and miracles following the preaching of the Word, just as in Bible times. And the Holy Spirit is still filling and baptising believers today, empowering them to do what is humanly impossible without the power of God at work in and through them.

The baptism of the Holy Spirit is a precious gift for every born-again believer and is essential for us to live out our Christian faith purposefully and victoriously. I recently watched a teaching by Ted Shuttlesworth Jr. on YouTube. He entitled his message ‘Seven Benefits of Speaking in Tongues’. It so touched my heart that I have decided to use the next couple of letters to share these benefits with you. My purpose is to stir up a holy hunger in every believer who either reads these letters or watches the videos, to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues. And for those believers who already speak in tongues: to stir up a hunger and determination to purposefully take up this remarkable gift and make it a far more regular practice in your daily life. I have no doubt that this is exactly what you will eagerly desire and pursue once you understand the amazing benefits of operating in this gift.

So get ready to be stirred up to live on purpose in the unmistakable power of God that is available to you as a believer!

All my love,