The Hate Flag

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New Hope for Dry Bones

A year or so ago, while driving from one fishing hole to another, I saw a house that caught my eye. It wasn’t a big or grand house. It wasn’t a falling down shack. In fact, I never would have noticed if it weren’t for one feature that I wasn’t expecting to see.

The garage doors were adorned with giant swastikas and then there were Nazi flags hanging on the front of the house.

I’ve never actually seen these symbols displayed on a home before then. These are the things I see spray-painted on a house hastily by vandals or tattooed on a guest of the Jerry Springer show. They seldom invade my world.

We drove past this house several times over the few days we spent fishing in the area. I never saw who lived inside but I developed very strong opinions about what kind of people they…

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You know…I kind of feel some sympathy for Jonah and Peter!

Yes!  I know!  They were strong-willed, rebellious, disobedient, hasty, deniers of God; but one thing they were NOT, and that was complacent!

God told Jonah to go to the city of Nineveh, and preach.  But…he did not want to, so HE RAN in the opposite direction, and ended up being swallowed and in  the belly of a whale.

Peter followed Jesus, and even defended Him in the Garden when Judas betrayed Him…remember how Peter drew his sword, and cut off a guys ear?  Now that’s some ‘body guard’ !  But in the end, he was swallowed up in fear.

We as modern-day Christians, look down the end of our noses, point our self-righteous fingers at these two men of God, and say, “Shame! Shame!”   But…I want to point out that we are no different!

Some of us have been called of God to be Preachers, Missionaries, Sunday School Teachers, Evangelists, Worship Leaders, Musicians (in the church), Ushers, Greeters, Encourages, Prayer Warriors…etc.  But, we don’t want to!

We don’t want the lonely life of a Preacher.

We don’t want to go to a foreign land and be a Missionary.

We don’t want to have to deal with little children every Sunday and be a Teacher.

We don’t want to be Evangelists and have to travel all the time.

We don’t want to be Worship Leaders and Musicians in the church…we want the fame and notoriety the world offers to secular singers and musicians!

We don’t want to be Ushers, and have to look at the angry faces when we pass the offering plate to obligatory givers.

We don’t want to smile and be cordial to folks on Sunday morning as they enter the House of God to worship.

We don’t want to encourage others…after all…we need to be encouraged too!

We don’t want to put on our armor everyday, and fight the devil and his demons as we kneel in prayer as Warriors…it’s too hard!

And… we don’t want to raise the Name of Jesus in our daily conversation because we may offend someone, then we’ll get embarrassed and they won’t like us anymore.

Heck!  With some of us “Christians”, maybe even most, no one in the world even realizes that we KNOW Jesus!  Now that IS A SHAME!

Don’t get all bent now!  I’m preaching to myself as well!

God HATES complacency!  He HATES staleness!  It makes Him want to vomit!    He said in Revelation 3…”…I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot.  I wish you would be cold or hot.  So because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spit you out of My mouth! …”

I said all that, to say this:  Don’t be complacent!  Don’t become stale!  DON’T GET SWALLOWED UP IN THE THINGS OF THIS LIFE!  If you name the Name of Christ, then don’t just ‘talk the talk’… WALK THE WALK!  PUT FEET TO YOUR PRAYERS!  BE…I said…BE JESUS, WITH SKIN ON!





I know I’ve already posted this, but what with Spring on it’s way, I was reminded of it again early this morning as I heard the birds singing Praises to our God. I wrote this poem about three years ago. Hope you enjoy! Remember…”Sorrow lasts for a night…but Joy comes in the morning! -anita

The Gathering Journal

“…Weeping may endure for a night, but JOY comes in the morning.”  Psalms 30:5


If you were at The Gathering yesterday morning for worship, you heard Mike (my husband), tell the story about the bird outside our window; but I want to go back a few days and tell you the rest of that story.

We had several torrential rain storms hit our area, and I was very concerned about the birds and their young ones.  Every night, I would pray for them to be safe and dry.  I even gave God some advice on the storms, and told Him that perhaps he should lessen the amount of water He was sending, for although the seeds I had planted were enjoying this down-pour…the animals outside were probably NOT as appreciative!

Saturday night, I got ready for bed and took a peek out my window to see what the weather looked…

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Most of the avid readers of this blog are probably wondering “Why?” I’m so late in posting today.

Well…can I just lay it all on the line for you?  I truly hit what they call, ‘writer’s block’ this morning.  I have been wracking my brain, asking myself and God just what it was that He wanted me to write today.  Finally, I heard Him say, “Go to your Promise Box…”

So, I did.  Here is what I found.  Now, keep in mind, I went to choose one ( 1 )…and got three ( 3 ) instead.   DO YOU THINK HE’S TRYING TO TELL ME SOMETHING????

I have been in earnest prayer for a few things lately, but they ALL deal with me having to wait on the Lord for His answer, and His time.  For those of you that really know me, you are already aware of the fact that, I don’t wait too well!  I’m like Peter.  I’m impetuous, quick to do, quick to say, quick to judge, quick to answer….  Too quick for my own good most of the time.  So…take a gander at these three promises.  They all have to do with WAITING ON THE LORD! LOL 🙂

  1.  “Light is sown for the righteous, gladness for the upright in heart.  -Psalm 97:11

The little poem that went with it said this:  “We bless Thee for Thy peace, O God!  Deep as the boundless sea.  Which falls like sunshine on the road, of those who trust in Thee.”

2.  “The Lord is good unto them that WAIT for Him, to the soul that seeks Him.” – Lamentations 3:25

And…last, but not least….

3.  “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.”  -John 14:3

Now, on this last one, I should KNOW I have to wait for God’s timing!  I’ve been saved almost 50 years now.  God promised me that He is preparing a place for me in Heaven…but He’s made me wait 50 years, and He may make me wait a little longer… but I AM GOING to that place some day!

So, after these ‘subtle’  reminders from Him…I’m okay with waiting….  Well…at least for today 🙂  If you think of me now and then, can you whisper a little prayer regarding my impatience?  I’d really appreciate it!  I think God will too!


Prisoner of the Lord

This post blessed my heart so much! As stated, we all have prisons in our life that hold us back. Give these things to Jesus, and watch His beauty manifested in you! -anita

Wilderness Joy

“two men looked out from prison bars, one saw mud, the other stars”
~ Frederick Langbridge (1849-1922) British Clergyman
…. I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles…”
-Ephesians 3:1b
Paul never refers to being a prisoner of the Romans or Jews.
Even while in prison Paul saw himself as a prisoner of the Lord!
~ William Earnhardt

Jesus will never leave you. He will never forsake you.
Know that at the time when you feel most abandoned
and alone, He holds you gently in the palm of His hand.
Think of a bulb lying deep beneath the winter snow.
It feels abandoned and alone,
its prison cold and dark.
Everything looks hopeless.
Everything looks dead.
But behold the stirrings of spring.
The new life, the new growth, and the glorious flowering
all come as a result of the long and lonely winter.

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In Jonah 1:1-3, we see that God asked Jonah to do something… but Jonah went in the opposite direction.

Has God ever asked YOU to do something, but you were fearful, so you ignored His voice.  You ran in the other direction, hoping He would not find you…hoping He would forget His call on your life.

But one thing we must all understand…GOD’S CALL ON YOUR LIFE IS WITHOUT REPENTENCE!  God does not decide to do a thing, and then change His mind.

If you have been called by God, you need to listen and obey His instructions.  Yes, your ‘perfect’ life may be interrupted.  You may have to leave all that you know and go somewhere you really never wanted to go.  You may have to give up many possessions.  But, we must realize that we can never run far enough, or hide from God Almighty!

Jonah tried to hide in the bottom of the ship…But God knew he was there!  The psalmist David said this in Psalm 139: 7-10, “7 Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? 8 If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! 9 If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, 10 even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me. 

 Evangelist Priscilla Shirer said, and I quote:    “Interruptions. They’re aggravating. Sometimes infuriating. But how we handle interruptions actually tell us more about ourselves. What do we do when God interrupts our lives? Many times, like Jonah, we run! … interruption is actually God’s invitation to do something beyond our wildest dreams. When Jonah was willing to allow God to interrupt his life, the result was revival in an entire city.”  -Priscilla Shirer
There are many fishes, waiting to swallow up the person who flees from God’s call; depression, unhappiness, weariness, fearfulness…even death.
When God calls, we need to run in the direction of His voice, and let His grace, mercy, protection and provision, swallow us up and prepare us to do His Will!


We have been studying the Book of Nehemiah at church.  We learned that the Sheep Gate is the Gate of Salvation, the Fish Gate represents the Gate of Evangelism, and the Old Gate is the Counsel of the Lord…His Old Truths that most of us have forgotten.

In Chapter 3 of Nehemiah, we find that the walls of the city were being rebuilt using the old material they found in the debris.  No new material was used.  This shows us that,  “If we don’t remember our past…we will repeat it!”

We need to ask God to remind us of what He brought us out of, and where we could have been had He not rescued us!   When you remember all the things that God brought you through in the past, you will KNOW in your heart, that He will bring you through in the present and the future!  You will trust Him with all your heart when you ponder on His Goodness!

I think Alison Krauss said it very well…

Let us always remember what we used to be before the Savior found us!  Let us stay “Connected” to our Lord, for it is He who makes our life stable!  Learn His Word.  Love His Word.  Live His Word!

William Rodriquez/anita



Here’s a good one from Pastor Danny!  Take a look….  -anita



Voddie Baucham

Brokenness is the off ramp leading to the narrow road of repentance.Often we think rededication will repair the pain of sin in our lives. The church is too quick to try and repair the damage and pain of sin without the brokenness that allows true healing. Just like in the commercials today, there is a pill for every discomfort, plus a pill for the discomfort caused by other pills.

Ephesians 6:12 King James Version (KJV)

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Psalm 51:17 King James Version (KJV)

The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

Ps 51:1-2

1 Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.

2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin! ESV

Blot out – the same word as flood in the Genesis account – wipe all sin away. Maccah – blot out, destroy, wipe away

Wash me thoroughly – a picture similar to using a scrub board to wash stains away.

Cleanse me – a ceremonial cleansing, such as performed by the priests.

John 1:29 New International Version

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!

God forgets our sin but we don’t. Why don’t we forget?

“…my sin is ever before me…” Psalm 51:3

Notice this Psalm was written a year after the sin with Bathsheba.

Three things that happen when we remember our sin:

  1. Wouldn’t be able to testify to God’s grace and mercy.
  2. Wouldn’t remember to not sin.
  3. Couldn’t rejoice in the victories.

Our sin is an affront to a Holy and Righteous God.

Ps 51:4 Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you may be justified in your words and blameless in your judgment. ESV

Lack of brokenness is a hindrance to true worship of God.

Isaiah 1:10-20 New International Version (NIV)

10 Hear the word of the Lord, you rulers of Sodom; listen to the instruction of our God,

you people of Gomorrah!

11 “The multitude of your sacrifices—vwhat are they to me?” says the Lord.

“I have more than enough of burnt offerings, of rams and the fat of fattened animals;

I have no pleasure in the blood of bulls and lambs and goats.

12 When you come to appear before me, who has asked this of you, this trampling of my courts?13 Bring no more vain offerings; incense is an abomination to me. New moon and Sabbath and the calling of convocations— I cannot endure iniquity and solemn assembly.

14 Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hates; they have become a burden to me; I am weary of bearing them.

15 When you spread out your hands, I will hide my eyes from you; even though you make many prayers, I will not listen; your hands are full of blood.

16 Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes; cease to do evil,

17 learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow’s cause.

18 “Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.

19 If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land;

20 but if you refuse and rebel, you shall be eaten by the sword; for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.” ESV

Psalm 51

5 Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

6 Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom.

7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

8 Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.

9 Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities.

10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.

11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.

12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.

13 Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.

14 Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation: and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness.

15 O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise.

16 For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering.

17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

18 Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion: build thou the walls of Jerusalem.

19 Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering: then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar.

Psalm 34:18

The LORD is near to the brokenhearted And saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Psalm 147:3

He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds.


Isaiah 66:2

“For My hand made all these things, Thus all these things came into being,” declares the LORD “But to this one I will look, To him who is humble and contrite of spirit, and who trembles at My word.

Isaiah 57:15

For thus says the high and exalted One Who lives forever, whose name is Holy, “I dwell on a high and holy place, And also with the contrite and lowly of spirit In order to revive the spirit of the lowly And to revive the heart of the contrite.

In Hebrew

ן ashkun I-am-tabernacling וְ אֶ ת u·ath and·with ־ – דַּ כָּ א dka one-crushed וּשְׁ פַ ל u·shphl and·lowly-one-of ־ – רוּחַ ruch spirit לְ הַ חֲ י#ת l·echiuth to·to-crevive-of רוּחַ ruch spirit-of שְׁ פָ לִ ים shphlim lowly-ones וּלְ הַ חֲ י#ת u·l·echiuth and·to·to-crevive-of לֵ ב lb heart-of נִ דְ כָּ אִ ים ndkaim ones-being-crushed

-Pastor Danny Leavitt


Broken Together
“Broken Together

What do you think about when you look at me

I know we’re not the fairytale you dreamed we’d be

You wore the veil, you walked the aisle, you took my hand

And we dove into a mystery


How I wish we could go back to simpler times

Before all our scars and all our secrets were in the light

Now on this hallowed ground, we’ve drawn the battle lines

Will we make it through the night?


How it must have been so lonely by my side

We were building kingdoms and chasing dreams and left love behind

I’m praying God will help our broken hearts align

And we won’t give up the fight


It’s gonna take much more than promises this time

Only God can change our minds


Maybe you and I were never meant to be complete

Could we just be broken together?

If you can bring your shattered dreams and I’ll bring mine

Could healing still be spoken and save us?


The only way we’ll last forever is broken together

Thomas a Kempis




“Hello…??” Can you hear ME now?”…

23 The sky over your head will be brass, the ground beneath you iron. -Deuteronomy 28:23


Do you ever feel like the heavens are made of brass?  You know what I’m talking about…when you pray and pray about a certain situation, but nothing seems to change?  It reminds me of that old Verizon commercial that says…”CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW?”

I know I encounter many prayer times where I feel that my words aren’t getting through to the ears of God.  When this happens, I begin to examine myself.

If we refuse to obey the voice of God, then He cannot, and will not bless us!  It’s just like our children,  When they are obedient to us, they are rewarded and blessed.  However, when they fail to obey us, there is a consequence that most times, proves to be unpleasant.

I believe God is the same.  If we are His children, he expects us to obey His voice.  He IS, however, much more patient with us.  He’s slow to anger…The Lord is slow to anger but great in power; the Lord will not leave the guilty unpunished. -Nahum 1

If we are not receiving the result we are looking for in our prayer time…maybe it’s not us that should be asking God, “Can You hear me now?”  Perhaps it is God asking US…”Can you hear ME now?”

Let’s examine ourselves…let’s ask God to examine us,

Investigate my life, O God,
    find out everything about me;
Cross-examine and test me,
    get a clear picture of what I’m about;
See for yourself whether I’ve done anything wrong—
    then guide me on the road to eternal life.-Psalm 139:23-24






The more clearly we see God’s sovereignty the less perplexed we are by man’s calamities, know that those who bless God in their trials will be blessed by God through their trials. -Daniel Olukoya