Spiritual Drought

September 24, 2019 by  
Filed under Christian Life, Family Focus

By Nina Medrano –

“O GOD, You are my God, earnestly will I seek You; my inner self thirsts for You, my flesh longs and is faint for You, in a dry and weary land where no water is” (Psalm 63 AMP).

These past few months Texas is experiencing record drought. Churches across the State are holding gatherings to pray specifically for rain. Even secular News announcers and Meteorologists are asking folks to pray for rain. And, still no rain. On a spiritual level, I, too have been experiencing a spiritual drought-an emptiness that has left a deep crater within me, a longing for the Lord.

I searched for Him in the Scriptures and did not find him. I searched for him in prayer and did not find him. Like the Shulamite woman, I sought him in my private heart chamber, I sought him in church, meetings and prophetic camps, but I did not find him (Song of Solomon 3).

Everywhere I searched I caught only whiffs of His fragrance where I knew he had been but I had just missed him. Oh! My heart cried for Him even more.

An old memory rises from the depths of my soul: I had worked very late one night and was returning back to campus where I attended Bible College. I was travelling on Central Expressway in Dallas, Texa,s and in the privacy of my car I said to the Lord, out loud, “I love you so much that it hurts to be here!” I was not expecting to hear a response. But, immediately, I heard the Lord laugh and say, “Oh! How I delight in your love for me!” It was the first time that I had ever heard the Lord laugh. He has a beautiful laugh-hearty and full of melody. To hear him respond to my aching heart was so shockingly real that I burst in tears and cried all the way back to my dorm. This  happened over thirty years ago.

Last night I was restless–not even TV could fill my void. Unable to sleep, I went to my closet. I pulled out and dusted off my guitar from my college days. I began to re-tune the guitar strings– stretching the cords, back-n-forth, beyond the tension of their present setting until all cords sang harmoniously.

The guitar was not the only thing out of tune. My fingers lacked the rhythm it once knew with the strings. Then, I discovered that my voice was out of tune with my heart. Painstakingly, I pressed on over and over until my fingers began to hurt and stiffen from un-use .In my frustration, I cried, out-loud, to the Lord, “I AM LONGING!”

I sensed a gentle prodding to go on.go on and say what it is I am longing for.

“I long for you.”
“I long to hear your voice.”
“I long to see your hand of power.”
“I long to speak your Word and see it perform miracles”
“I long to swing my sword and slay your enemies as in the old days.”
“I long to see hearts radically changed by your Word.”

Suddenly, a song broke forth, like a dam, rushing waters from heaven
spilled into my soul, filling my spirit and making me whole.

Now, I wonder. Why hasn’t the Lord released the rains in Texas? What is he waiting on? Is he waiting on us to seek him wholeheartedly?

“‘If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. I will be found by you,’ says the LORD” (Jeremiah 29:13-14 NLT).

David Wilkerson: A Grain of Wheat

September 1, 2019 by  
Filed under Christian Life, Family Focus

By Nina Medrano –

I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat is planted in the soil and dies, it remains alone. But its death will produce many new kernels—a plentiful harvest of new lives” (John 12:24, NLT).

Rev. David Wilkerson, founding pastor of the Times Square Church in
New York City, was killed Wednesday in a car crash in Texas, according
to a source close to CBN News.  He was 79.  Rev. Wilkerson’s wife Gwen
was also involved in the crash and rushed to the hospital.  Details of
the crash are still developing. Stay with CBNNews.com for an update.

The day that I heard this news broadcast my breathing paused for a long while. Almost immediately, I began to receive multiple internet news on Pastor Dave’s passing. Still too shocked to believe my ears and eyes, my mind raced back to the day Keith Green died a tragic death in an airplane crash in 1982.

It was July 28, 1982 and I was visiting dear friends who lived on an Air Force base in Victorville, California, when we heard the news of Keith Green.

I still remember how compelling the power of God moved upon me and my friends as we gathered together trying to grasp the news of the death of this mighty man of God, of our ‘then’ generation.

There was such a surge of anointing running through our hearts that we could not continue with the tasks at-hand. We HAD to share the gospel—we were compelled to tell someone about Jesus Christ!

We turned off the television. We turned off the stove—dinner will have to wait.  We grabbed our Bibles and we took off walking—we didn’t know where we were going—we just knew we had to tell someone that Jesus Christ loves them and died for them on a cross and desires to have relationship with them.

As if on some spiritual frequency, we all stopped and looked at each other and sensed that we should go to the women’s dorm building.

With our spiritual sword in hand, we knocked on the first door in the woman’s dorm.  A young woman came to the door. She was crying and alone. She let us in her room. We asked her why she was crying. She told us that this was her first time away from home. We opened up the Word of God and shared the Good News that Jesus loves her and will always be with her!

We led this young woman and several others to Christ that evening.

I find it amazing that whenever the death of a mighty man of God takes place, that God has a divine plan for this. It is His pattern for life, which leads to multiplication.

“…unless a kernel of wheat is planted in the soil and dies, it remains alone. But its death will produce many new kernels—a plentiful harvest of new lives.”

May the power of God so compel us to pursue and capture this generation as it was in the life of David Wilkerson.

A Woman of Noble Character

June 23, 2019 by  
Filed under Christian Life, Family Focus

Based on Proverbs 31: 10-30
By Nina Medrano –

Who can find a virtuous and capable woman? Such as our mothers, who are worth more than precious rubies. Mother’s husband can trust her, and she will greatly enrich his life.

Mother will not hinder him but help him all her life.

Mother finds wool and flax and busily spins it. She is like a merchant’s ship; she brings her food from afar.  Mother gets up before dawn to prepare breakfast for her household and plans the day’s work for her girls. Mother goes out to inspect a field and buys it; with her earnings she plans a vineyard.

Mother is energetic and strong, a hard worker. She watches for bargains; her lights burn late into the nights. Mother’s hands are busy spinning thread, her fingers twisting fiber.

Mother extends a helping hand to the poor and opens her arms to the needy. She has NO FEAR of winter for her household because all of them have warm clothes. She quilts her own bedspreads. Mother dresses like royalty in gowns of finest cloth.

Her husband is well known, for he sits in the council meeting with the other leaders.

Mother is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs with no fear of the future.  When Mother speaks, her words are wise, and kindness is the rule when she gives instructions.  She carefully watches all that goes on in her household and does not have to bear the consequences of laziness.

Mother’s children stand and bless her! Her husband praises her! There are many virtuous and capable women in the world, but YOU, Mom, surpass them all!

Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord  will be greatly praised!  Reward her for all she has done. Let her deeds publicly declare her praise.

Lord, Help My Unbelief!

June 11, 2019 by  
Filed under Christian Life, Family Focus

By Nina Medrano—

Yesterday was a fun day out with my youngest sister.  It was the first nice warm weather day that we’d had since winter, so we went shopping and then out for lunch.  Next we went to the lake and fed bread to the ducks.  Yes, the warmth from the sun and the relaxed fellowship with my sister did us both good.

As the time to pick up the girls from school drew near, we gathered our belongings and laughed our way back to my truck.  My little sister slid into the passenger seat, still smiling, and said, “Thanks Sis, thanks for today.”

It’s been a difficult year for our family, especially the last seven days.  Cancer cells have invaded my grandfather’s liver, throat and spinal cord.  It’s very heartbreaking to see him suffer such pain.

As we approached the school building my cell phone bleeped letting me know that I had a text message waiting.  I parked my truck and my sister ran to meet the girls.  I read my message, “Grandpa has decided to take chemo—starting today.  The doctor will discharge him from the hospital in a couple of days.  Grandpa needs all of our courage!”

I didn’t realize that I had been holding my breath until I released a heavy sigh.

Last night I could not sleep, thinking about the last part of the text message, “…Grandpa needs all our courage.”  My grandfather is saying that he wants to live longer and he wants to defeat cancer.  He is asking us to join him in faith and in fight because he does not know how long he can endure.

Unable to sleep, I lay in bed, wrestling with my unbelief.  I am reminded of the story of the boy Jesus healed, written in Mark 9:23-25 (NKJ), “Jesus said to him, ‘If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.’  Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, ‘Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!’”

Like the father of this child, I too cried out, “Lord, please take my unbelief and change it into faith—like water into wine.  Please increase what little faith I have so I may confidently speak to the mountain cells of cancer and cast them into the sea.  Lord, I believe, please help my unbelief!

Like many warriors of God before me, I lay at His feet, trembling in my weakness of faith, desperately crying for a supernatural intervention, seeking for a miracle to take place.

Sometime in the night, I fell asleep.  When I awoke, I felt suited up in armor and ready for battle.  May the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob be with us all who battle against cancer.

Ephesians 6:10-13 (New King James Version)
The Whole Armor of God
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

Nina Medrano writes for her church blog: http://www.cotrwomensministry.blogspot.com/

New Wine

June 3, 2019 by  
Filed under Christian Life, Family Focus

By Nina Medrano –

Life has a way of leading us to certain crossroads that turn out to be a significant turning point.

Our lives become transformed by that decision. And in our heart of hearts we lay a milestone to commemorate the day we resolve to follow a certain path.

For me, that milestone is tithing.

Like many, when I began my life with the Lord, I did not tithe. As I grew in the knowledge of God’s Word, I learned that the tithe belongs to God. I also learned that when I did not tithe I was robbing God. In the early years, I struggled to maintain a lifestyle of tithing.

However, my desire to please the Lord began to outweigh my fear of not having enough.

I can testify of the Lord’s faithfulness to supply all of my financial needs. I cannot tell you how He does it; but only that He does. Many times I have compared my expenses with my income and found myself short. Yet, by God’s faithfulness, all of my needs are met. Praise is to God.

Proverbs 3:9-10 reads, “Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the best part of everything you produce. Then he will fill your barns with grain, and your vats will overflow with good wine.”

As I meditate upon these verses I realize that this is true for me and my house. Our “barn” which represents our storage of goods is full! Our fuel tanks are full, our refrigerator is full, our freezers are full, and our wallets have extra.

Then, a new revelation dawned in my spirit when I read verse 10, “And your vats will overflow with new wine.”

Wine refers to the Holy Spirit and of anointing.  New wine speaks of new experiences and encounters with the Holy Spirit. Vats are containers of wine. We are the vessels that contain the Holy Spirit of God. We are “the temple of the Holy Spirit” (I Cor. 6:19 NIV). We are carriers of spiritual treasures (II Cor. 4:6 NIV).

So, if I honor the Lord with my wealth AND with the best part of everything I produce (including my writing), then God will fill my storage places AND I will overflow with new experiences and encounters with the Holy Spirit of God!

Don’t you just want to increase your tithe just to get more new wine? God knows that I need more of his anointing to flow through my life. As a mentor, I depend on the Holy Spirit to reveal the places that need healing. As a writer, I depend on the Holy Spirit to unfold the mysteries of God’s Word to share with the body of Christ.

Could you use more anointing?

As you read this spirit-inspired article I pray that the “eyes of your understanding be enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints” (Eph. 1:18 NIV).

Nina Medrano writes for her church blog at http://www.cotrwomensministry.blogspot.com/

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