Joy in Prison

“And Joseph’s master took him, and put him into a prison . . . But Jehovah was with Joseph . . . and that which he did, Jehovah made it to prosper” (Gen. 39:20-23).

When God lets us go to prison because we have been serving Him, and goes there with us, prison is about the most blessed place in the world that we could be in.  Joseph seems to have known that.  He did not sulk and grow discouraged and rebellious because .”everything was against him.”  If he had, the prison-keeper would never have trusted him so.  Joseph does not even seem to have pitied himself.
Let us remember that if self-pity is allowed to set in, that is the end of us–until it is cast utterly from us.  Joseph just turned over everything in joyous trust to God, and so the keeper of the prison turned over everything to Joseph.  Lord Jesus, when the prison doors close in on me, keep me trusting, and keep my joy full and abounding.  Prosper Thy work through me in prison: even there, make me free indeed.–Selected

A little bird I am,
Shut from the fields of air,
And in my cage I sit and sing
To Him who placed me there;
Well pleased a prisoner to be,
Because, my God, it pleaseth Thee.

My cage confines me round,
Abroad I cannot fly,
But though my wing is closely bound,
My soul is at liberty;
For prison walls cannot control
The flight, the freedom of the soul.

I have learnt to love the darkness of sorrow; there you see the brightness of His face.–Madame Guyon

(From Charles E Cowman Devotionals – Streams in the Desert)

By Death We Live

“As dying and behold we live” (2 Cor. 6:9).

I had a bed of asters last summer, that reached clear across my garden in the country. Oh, how gaily they bloomed. They were planted late. On the sides were yet fresh blossoming flowers, while the tops had gone to seed. Early frosts came, and I found one day that that long line of radiant beauty was seared, and I said, “Ah! the season is too much for them; they have perished”; and I bade them farewell.
 
I disliked to go and look at the bed, it looked so like a graveyard of flowers. But, four or five weeks ago one of my men called my attention to the fact that along the whole line of that bed there were asters coming up in the greatest abundance; and I looked, and behold, for every plant that I thought the winter had destroyed there were fifty plants that it had planted. What did those frosts and surly winds do?

They caught my flowers, they slew them, they cast them to the ground, they trod with snowy feet upon them, and they said, leaving their work, “This is the end of you.” And the next spring there were for every root, fifty witnesses to rise up and say, “By death we live.”

And as it is in the floral tribe, so it is in God’s kingdom. By death came everlasting life. By crucifixion and the sepulchre came the throne and the palace of the Eternal God. By overthrow came victory.

Do not be afraid to suffer. Do not be afraid to be overthrown.

It is by being cast down and not destroyed; it is by being shaken to pieces, and the pieces torn to shreds, that men become men of might, and that one a host; whereas men that yield to the appearance of things, and go with the world, have their quick blossoming, their momentary prosperity and then their end, which is an end forever.–Beecher

“Measure thy life by loss and not by gain,
Not by the wine drunk, but by the wine poured forth.
For love’s strength standeth in love’s sacrifice,
And he who suffers most has most to give.”

(From Charles E Cowman Devotionals – Streams in the Desert) 

The Summer Will Come

“Therefore will the Lord wait, that he may be gracious unto you” (Isa. 30:18).

Where showers fall most, there the grass is greenest. I suppose the fogs and mists of Ireland make it “the Emerald Isle”; and whenever you find great fogs of trouble, and mists of sorrow, you always find emerald green hearts; full of the beautiful verdure of the comfort and love of God. O Christian, do not thou be saying, “Where are the swallows gone? They are gone; they are dead.” They are not dead; they have skimmed the purple sea, and gone to a far-off land; but they will be back again by and by. Child of God, say not the flowers are dead; say not the winter has killed them, and they are gone. Ah, no! though winter hath coated them with the ermine of its snow; they will put up their heads again, and will be alive very soon. Say not, child of God, that the sun is quenched, because the cloud hath hidden it. Ah, no; he is behind there, brewing summer for thee; for when he cometh out again, he will have made the clouds fit to drop in April showers, all of them mothers of the sweet May flowers. And oh! above all, when thy God hides His face, say not that He hath forgotten thee. He is but tarrying a little while to make thee love Him better; and when He cometh, thou shalt have joy in the Lord, and shalt rejoice with joy unspeakable. Waiting exercises our grace; waiting tries our faith; therefore, wait on in hope; for though the promise tarry, it can never come too late. –C. H. Spurgeon

“Oh, every year hath its winter,
And every year hath its rain–
But a day is always coming
When the birds go north again.

“When new leaves swell in the forest,
And grass springs green on the plain,
And alders’ veins turn crimson–
And the birds go north again.

“Oh, every heart hath its sorrow,
And every heart hath its pain–
But a day is always coming
When the birds go north again.

“‘Tis the sweetest thing to remember,
If courage be on the wane,
When the cold, dark days are over–
Why, the birds go north again.”

(From Charles E Cowman Devotionals – Streams in the Desert) 

Don’t Rush

“Who is among you that feareth Jehovah, that obeyeth the voice of his servant? He that walketh in darkness and hath no light, let him trust in the name of Jehovah and rely upon his God” (Isa. 50:10, RV).

What shall the believer do in times of darkness–the darkness of perplexity and confusion, not of heart but of mind? Times of darkness come to the faithful and believing disciple who is walking obediently in the will of God; seasons when he does not know what to do, nor which way to turn. The sky is overcast with clouds. The clear light of Heaven does not shine upon his pathway. One feels as if he were groping his way in darkness.

Beloved, is this you? What shall the believer do in times of darkness? Listen! “Let him trust in the name of the Lord, and rely upon his God.”

The first thing to do is do nothing. This is hard for poor human nature to do. In the West there is a saying that runs thus, “When you’re rattled, don’t rush”; in other words, “When you don’t know what to do, don’t do it.”

When you run into a spiritual fog bank, don’t tear ahead; slow down the machinery of your life. If necessary, anchor your bark or let it swing at its moorings. We are to simply trust God. While we trust, God can work. Worry prevents Him from doing anything for us. If our minds are distracted and our hearts distressed; if the darkness that overshadows us strikes terror to us; if we run hither and yon in a vain effort to find some way of escape out of a dark place of trial, where Divine providence has put us, the Lord can do nothing for us.

The peace of God must quiet our minds and rest our hearts. We must put our hand in the hand of God like a little child, and let Him lead us out into the bright sunshine of His love.
 
He knows the way out of the woods. Let us climb up into His arms, and trust Him to take us out by the shortest and surest road.–Dr. Pardington

Remember we are never without a pilot when we know not how to steer.

“Hold on, my heart, in thy believing–
The steadfast only wins the crown;
He who, when stormy winds are heaving,
Parts with its anchor, shall go down;
But he who Jesus holds through all,
Shall stand, though Heaven and earth should fall.

“Hold out! There comes an end to sorrow;
Hope from the dust shall conquering rise;
The storm foretells a summer’s morrow;
The Cross points on to Paradise;
The Father reigneth! cease all doubt;
Hold on, my heart, hold on, hold out.”

(From Charles E Cowman Devotionals – Streams in the Desert) 

Having a Thankful Heart

This month is Thanksgiving month and to kickoff this month’s teleministry, Pastor James Reyes would introduce us to Pastor Allen Charles.

Pastor Allen used to be a policeman who turned to drugs. To sustain his addiction he ended up cooking up his own meth. Lost his family, got divorced and ended up becoming homeless and suicidal. He has since found our Lord and has turned his eyes on Him. Since then he is now an evangelist and is part of Charisma Christian Center in Seattle involved children ministry. Listen to his story tonight at 7:00 PM.

Teleconference Information.

Dial-in Number: 1-785-686-2400 Kansas
Participant Access Code: 33264

(Note: We’re starting to stream the teleconference online.  You could also try this link.)

Hope you could join us tonight!

Our Prayer Life

After a month of pilot testing with our prayer teleministry-conference, we have now moved to a new web site from Charisma Prayer Ministry.

We started this ministry as a way to reach out to people who are need of prayer. In the next few days, we will be updating this website and there will be a form for you to post your prayer request.

We will also include a devotional for you to use. We encourage you to sign up for them as it becomes available. We would also include a book store courtesy of Amazon and Christian Book Store. If you have any encouraging article, please feel free to send us a copy and we will review it for inclusion in our website.

This ministry is hosted by Pastor Jojo (Josephine) Jose of Charisma Life Church in Pomona, California and Pastor James Reyes of Charisma Christian Church in Seattle. Pastor Jojo is currently in Manila, Philippines and we were able to have both of this wonderful servants of God to enlighten us and help us build a strong relationship with our Lord through prayer.

Every Friday 7:00PM we have a teleministry conference and the Lord willing, we would try to have it ‘streaming’ on the web so that all of you could listen to it.

If everything goes well, tomorrow we will have our first initial web broadcast. I hope you will be able to tune in tomorrow 7:00PM Pacific Standard Time. (USA).

George Manlangit
Technology Specialist
Our Prayer Life