You and Me Time

Do you have a relationship that is extra special in your life? A spouse, friend or family member, someone you make time for just because you enjoy the relationship and are blessed by it? How does it feel when you have not seen that person in a while? Something is missing, you feel out of sorts or lonely, perhaps… Have you ever had the thought or made the statement to that person, we need ‘you and me time’!?

This morning, as I rose to face the challenges of the day, I said to Jesus, ‘Lord, I don’t know where to begin.’ He said back quickly in my spirit, We need you and Me time.

Isn’t that amazing? He is so personal and loving. He knew the thing I most needed to settle my busy mind and sort my day was to sit in fellowship with Him. I needed to soak in His calming presence and our loving relationship. And He needed it, too. We don’t often think in those terms, but He desires our presence maybe more than we desire His.  He craves ‘you and Me time’ – those loving moments together!

So, with His prompting, I poured a steaming cup of coffee, grabbed my laptop and curled up on the sofa. The first thing I did was play a few worship songs. Godly music so quickly saturates the atmosphere around me and makes it holy. As I respond to the words, and use them to love my Father, Savior, and welcome His Spirit, His presence surrounds me with unconditional love and joy.

Reading and pondering His Word are the next step. It doesn’t have to be more than a verse or two. But getting Scripture inside us arms us against the assault of lies that constantly come from the world every day. Truth from His Word keeps our mind wise to the enemy and lights our steps.

Another thing I do is talk to the Lord, and listen. It is so common to think of prayer as mainly a one-way street. But it is actually a conversation.

When we learn to walk surrendered and filled with the Holy Spirit, we begin hearing the Lord speak to us. To grow our ability to hear Him, we must regularly embrace quiet… and listen. Over time, we begin recognizing His voice. He loves to surprise us at times how clearly His Spirit whispers words of love and guidance into our soul.

So, have you had your ‘You and me time’ with Jesus today?

You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 16:11 NKJV

Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends. Revelation 3:20 NLT

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Praying for America, City on a Hill

14 `You are the light of the world, a city set upon a mount is not able to be hid; 15 nor do they light a lamp, and put it under the measure, but on the lamp-stand, and it shines to all those in the house; 16 so let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works, and may glorify your Father who [is] in the heavens. (MATTHEW 5, Young’s Literal)

Father, You are great and the source of all blessing and power! We praise You today and bring our nation before You with urgency and humility.

America has surely been a country You have set ‘upon a mountain’ to the world, unable to hide, shining the light of Christ round the whole earth, always reaching a helping hand to those in need of refuge and rebuilding.

Please set Your face against every enemy within and without our nation that wishes to turn us away from You! Defeat every foe and revive Your people in this nation.

More, restore Your nation, that we may continue shining for You, that the world will see our good works and glorify You!

In the powerful name of Jesus, and in full surrender to Your Holy Spirit, we ask these things.

All praise and glory be to Him who gives the uttermost part of the earth for our possession! (Psalm 2:8)

Amen.

And your beginning has been small, And your latter end is very great. JOB 8:7 YLT

The Burden of Pride

In my youth, I remember hearing often the comforting verse, cast your cares upon Him, for He cares for you (I Peter 5:7). The word care was understood to be some type of burden. At the time, in my young mind I thought a burden was only something that caused worry or sorrow.

This morning, the Spirit showed me that pride is as difficult a burden as worry. Maybe more difficult. Pride can be a lion ready to shred others at any provocation.

How quickly do we take offense to the slights of others? All it takes is a short drive down the road to bring out my lion. “She cut me off!” “He raced too fast around me, how dare he!” Pride lurks so close to the surface, it takes next to nothing to have it springing out, claws extended!

Yet, traffic offenses are mostly impersonal. Strangers cutting us off are nothing compared to someone familiar getting in your face and yelling at you in front of others. To fight off the lion in those moments and find grace and forgiveness is truly tough.

What do we do with this care, this burden that could become an out-of-control beast? Paul said cast it upon Christ. The word translated cast in I Peter 5:7 could mean either place it or throw it in Greek. The lion of pride is surely one that needs to be thrown! Don’t wait, or it might catch you with its claws in the process of trying to take someone else out.

The next time you are wounded by someone, and the burden of pride comes roaring out like a lion, throw it quickly upon Jesus! Let Him dissolve it into peace, reminding you He understands pain and humiliation very well, and let Him restore your spirit by filling you with His.

The Center of Land of Promise

Day before yesterday, I let Faith and Fasting friends know I published a book called, Land of Promise. I had to return today to share something that happened yesterday because I’m still shocked by it!

First, know this book continues to surprise me every time I read it. That sounds nuts, but it is true. I know God gave me the information, led me to the research and opened my eyes to things in Scripture I’d never noticed before. But, it is a diversion from very traditional interpretations of some things.

At the heart of it, I believe this book is a realignment onto the center of Scripture: Christ. He is the center. A few teachers/scholars over the years have tried to make the center of the Bible the nation of Israel. But, when we make Messiah the center, the rest of Scripture unfolds correctly.

Okay, now for the really, really strange thing that happened yesterday. I was re-reading the book in my Kindle app. Kindle let me know I was at the 50% mark, exactly halfway through the book.

Guess what I read on the middle section of the middle page of the book, something which I certainly did not/could not have planned! It was this:

“The most important thing I can say is… the Bible is not Israel-centered. Israel, meaning the earthly land. Rather, the Bible is Christ-centered… It is the testimony of how He related to His people, all of His people – Israel of God – before and after the cross. When we get the center point of the Bible wrong, we get everything out of focus… And our interpretations of Scripture suffer because they are faulty from the foundation.”

The weird thing is, that text was something I added at the last minute before I published  the book. I had no idea I’d placed it in the exact center until yesterday. My jaw dropped when I saw it.

I’ve noticed from the beginning the Spirit of God was all over this, it was His project. I pray His people give it a chance although it will challenge long-held thought for some.

I’ve priced the book very low because I just want people to read it. If you know someone who cannot afford it, the ebook can be loaned for 2 weeks by anyone who has purchased a copy. The ebook is $2.99 and the paperback is $7.99 (link below).

God bless!

https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss/158-0402283-8285826?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=land+of+promise+garcia

Land of Promise

Dear friends of Faith and Fasting, I am so pleased to announce that after two years of research and writing, my first book, Land of Promise, was published this month on Amazon.com!

This book takes a closer look at Old Testament prophecy and dares to suggest the U.S.A. was in prophecy all along, spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, for one, as a land where God’s people would gather in greater numbers in the last centuries.

It sounds crazy, I know, but the Biblical evidence is surprising and extremely compelling.

Anyway, I wanted you to be among the first to hear about Land of Promise. I’ve printed the Introduction here for you to sample. Have a blessed day!

 

INTRODUCTION

Masterfully and poetically, Isaiah prophesied the most pivotal events in human history. Isaiah foretold of a Redeemer coming to save a rebellious people. He comforted them with word of Redeemer’s long-awaited arrival. He described the suffering of that Servant. Then he promised glorious blessings of the people restored by Redeemer. In the simplest of terms, Isaiah is Messiah-centric.

Isaiah brought his message to life using relational and family concepts like widowhood, barrenness, and marriage. He talked of a new land for the bride, and birth of new children.

This book will eventually focus in on one specific topic of Isaiah’s prophecy. That is, where Isaiah gave descriptions regarding the new land, where the people restored by Redeemer would eventually dwell.

For an introductory glimpse, listen carefully to Isaiah 49:19-20:

19 Your desolate places and the land of your destruction will even now be too small for the inhabitants. 20 The children you will have after you have lost the others, will say… ‘the place is too small for me; give me a place where I can dwell.’

The prophet Isaiah let us know in this short passage that there would be a destroyed land and lost children. The prophecy of destroyed land was fulfilled in the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in 70 A.D.

He also revealed there would be so many new children that the old land of destruction would become much too small for them. Followers of Christ, having begun in Jerusalem, have grown and spread worldwide. Was that what Isaiah meant when he said the new children would need a bigger place to live, that they would someday cover the whole earth?

In one view, many well-established Bible scholars have insisted the new land Isaiah described is still a future fulfillment after the return of Christ, something God’s people will enjoy only in the Millennium. The Millennium, described briefly in Revelation, is the thousand-year reign of Christ on earth after His return.

But Isaiah’s very detailed descriptions, all the way down to soil content, perfectly match one particular land that exists now.

For many years, without explanation, I was overwhelmingly drawn to read Isaiah. Over and over, when I would pick up the Bible to read or study, I found myself landing in his prophetic chapters.

Each time I came across a mention of the ‘new land’ in Isaiah, I was intrigued and couldn’t help but silently ponder it sounded oddly familiar. The thought nagging my mind was it seemed very similar to United States history and makeup.

Certainly crazy and counter-culture in traditional circles, I barely mentioned my suspicions to anyone. It had long been declared absolute by so many Christian teachers that America is not in prophesy. Still, the prodding in my mind and spirit would not go away.

Finally, one day in the Fall of 2014, the Holy Spirit powerfully moved me to research America, to compare her to each of the descriptions in Isaiah regarding the new land for the followers of Redeemer. I wanted to hold up and thoroughly examine her founding, topography, and more, against every suspect passage in Isaiah.

My research began where Isaiah said the soil of the new land would contain multiple gemstones. With gemstone research as my cornerstone, I spent weeks studying in worldwide databases.

What I unearthed was overwhelming. The United States is saturated with multiple gemstones in her rocks and soil, far beyond any other country in the world.

The information to follow, uncovered over weeks and months, I can only describe as staggering. One by one, exact and distinct matches were found in America to all of Isaiah’s prophetic descriptions of the ‘future’ land until they added up to 100%.

There was no doubt in my mind we were a match. More than that, we were the head-and-shoulders-above-the-rest, single perfect match. Is it possible for such a thing to be a coincidence? Or, were we the fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy and scholars had somehow missed it?

By this time, my husband, aware of the growing research, was pushing me to finish. Still, I procrastinated. I’d never written a book. The scope of topics being challenged was overwhelming, and the fear of ridicule crippled me.

It seemed worthless, pointless to take on the traditional thought that has so long dominated. I couldn’t help but think it would be like trying to un-wedge people out of comfortable clay in which they had become practically cemented. And what if I was the wrong one?

Pressing me ever onward, one day the Spirit whispered to me, calculate the odds. What were the odds of one country in all of history being the clear, point-by-point match to every single prophecy of Isaiah’s new land? I had no idea how to calculate odds, but studied and learned.

When I finally put pencil to paper, my mind exploded again. The astronomical odds against one country being the identical match to Isaiah’s prophecy rendered it statistically impossible to have happened by chance. The numbers could not lie. No country could have been a perfect match, except by design.

In spite of this, my internal struggle persisted. I dreaded being labeled just one more pretentious American trying to elevate our far-from-perfect country to the level of ancient Israel.

Bottom line, how could I raise my hand and timidly suggest to an unwelcoming crowd that we might be another promised land right out of Scripture? That we might just be the dirty Cinderella whose foot inexplicably, perfectly, and exclusively fits into the glass slipper?

Regardless, the facts must be shared. The data demands hearing from a wider audience. And more importantly, if I’ve learned anything in life, when the Spirit hands you insight, revelation great or small, it must be proclaimed no matter the implications.

So, I bring you this evidence with timidity. Let’s be honest, it isn’t every day you challenge a paradigm or face down a giant. Still, it comforts me that a boy named David did just that once, and God was glorified in the outcome. And, this time around, there are more than just a few stones.

 

[Land of Promise is available as a Kindle ebook for $2.99, or in paperback for $7.99. To get your copy, click the link below:

https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=land+of+promise+valerie+garcia&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Aland+of+promise+valerie+garcia]

Praying for All the President’s Men and Women

Happy belated Thanksgiving, America! I hope and pray your holiday was blessed.

Watching the news this morning, I was inspired to once again make a plea to prayer for the President-elect and the appointment of his cabinet and important positions of power. Trump’s presidency will only be as wise and effective as are the men and women he places around him.

Please join me today in asking the Lord to bind away confusion and darkness from influencing these choices, in Jesus’ name!

Holy Father, loose wisdom and divine guidance in all decisions these days surrounding President-elect Trump. Hand pick every member of his team, from the lowest position to the greatest.

Father, please fill every position of leadership in the White House, State Department, Department of Justice, Supreme Court, Homeland Security, U.S. Armed Forces, Department of Health and Human Services, and every other agency of influence over the people of this land, with men and women of God! With men and women surrendered to the Lord and filled with His Holy Spirit!

Lord, in the name of Jesus and by your almighty power, please show the door to the true enemy, Satan, and his minions that may have infiltrated any American government entity. Replace those positions with God-fearing, wise and faithful followers of Christ, who will lead from a place of dependence upon You and Your wisdom in a morally and ethically challenged system.

Lord, bring true change and unity to our government and ultimately to Your land. Revive Your people to take up Your cross and follow You, Jesus. That we may be Your hands and feet, to reach the world for Christ and remain a blessing to people in need near and far in this world.

Most of all, use us, Father, to bring You glory and honor and praise, that every person and nation will again acknowledge this is Your land and that You are the source of our greatness. Please, Lord, make it so.  Amen.

Divine Intervention in Election?

[Note: Regardless our personal political leanings, I believe God is able to intervene in the selection of leaders, and in their decisions. At other times He allows us to reap what we have sown. Having said this, there was evidence of His intervention in the American election last November… and thus, this post is for your consideration. No matter your feelings about President Trump, as Christians, we MUST pray for him. We have no excuses to complain if we are not praying for our leaders.]

A conversation with my Aunt yesterday went something like this:

Her: I knew Trump would win all along. I never doubted it. Me: I knew Clinton would win, unless divine intervention changed the outcome. I think we saw divine intervention. So many were praying and fasting for this election to be directed by the hand of God.

I believe with all my heart God changed the course of history this week in response to the prayers and fasting of His children.

Did you know Christians in Jerusalem were praying and fasting for us in what they called the Jerusalem Global Gathering? They prayed ‘like never before for a just God to deliver His most Christian nation.’ (see article link below)

A Daystar broadcast, also streaming live on the internet, had a potential audience of 400 million viewers. In that broadcast, former Rep. Michele Bachmann, led a moment of prayer for the election. The very moment she prayed, election graphs later revealed became the precise moment the results turned and broke in favor of Trump.

Don’t miss this article, it will inspire your faith and belief in the power of prayer and fasting!

http://www.wnd.com/2016/11/signs-of-divine-intervention-in-trump-victory/