A Lower Light Keeper

I’m not sure what brought the beloved hymn ‘Let The Lower Lights Be Burning’ to the forefront of my mind. I rather think it was the Holy Spirit nudging me to recommit to His calling on my life. The Lord called me to be His witness when I received Him as my Savior in my teens. Endeavoring to be obedient to His call, I have served as a pastor, evangelist, and missionary over the last 60 plus years. At 80, I am intent on finishing strong. I want to be His witness, a light for Him, until my final breath.

I know that Jesus is THE Light of the world. Scripture says, “Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life(John 8:12, NKJV). The ‘light of life’ has dwelt in me from the day of my new birth. He is the great Lighthouse that beams the Father’s love and mercy across the troubled sea.

But I also understand that He called me to be a light in this world. He said, “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven(Matthew 5:14-16, NKJV). My calling is to let my ‘little light’ shine.

Songwriter Philip Bliss was traveling with the famous evangelist D.L. Moody. While preaching, Mr. Moody told a true story of a tragic shipwreck near Cleveland Harbor in which two hundred people lost their lives. Caught in a violent storm, the ship’s captain was trying to reach the safety of the harbor. The captain saw the great lighthouse of Cleveland Harbor, but he could not see the lower lights on the rocky shoreline. They had gone out. Without the lower lights, the ship missed the main channel and crashed into the rocks and sank. Mr. Moody then made an application from the story: “Brethren, the Master will take care of the great lighthouse of salvation, but it is our job to keep the lower lights burning to guide men safely to Him.” Later, Bliss penned the words of the hymn – ‘Let The Lower Lights Be Burning’:

            Brightly beams our Father’s mercy from his lighthouse evermore,
            But to us He gives the keeping of the lights along the shore.

            Let the lower lights be burning, send a gleam across the wave;
            Some poor fainting struggling seaman, you may rescue, you may save

            Dark, the night of sin has settled, loud the angry billows roar;
            Eager eyes are watching, longing for the lights along the shore.

            Let the lower lights be burning, send a gleam across the wave;
            Some poor fainting struggling seaman, you may rescue, you may save

            Trim your feeble lamp, my brother, some poor sailor, tempest-tossed,
            Trying now to make the harbor in the darkness may be lost.

            Let the lower lights be burning, send a gleam across the wave;
            Some poor fainting struggling seaman, you may rescue, you may save

Prayer: Lord, may I hear and respond to Your words: “I, the Lord, have called you in righteousness, And will hold your hand; I will keep you and give you as a covenant to the people, As a light to the Gentiles” (Isaiah 32:6, NKJV).

Food for Thought

As morning coffee time was ending, one of our regulars, Bob Pate, reacted to a request to consider a certain scripture verse with the statement, “That’s food for thought.”  I’ve heard that expression all my life. This time I slowed the pace of my mental processing and took a few moments to ‘cogitate’ on the phrase.

Initially, this old dog used a new trick – ‘google’. The internet definition is as follows: “an idea or issue to ponder, as in, “That interesting suggestion of yours has given us food for thought.” The metaphor transfers the idea of digestion from the stomach to the mind. It dates to the late 1800s. So I mulled over the expression – ‘food for thought’.

We live in an affluent culture. Restaurants of all types offer an unimaginable array of food. Grocery stores and specialty markets carry gastronomic delights from across the globe. It seems food is at the very heart of our society. It should be noted that not all of these food options are pleasant to taste, nor are all the foods healthy and safe. Some are highly toxic if not prepared properly. Other foods have a pungent aroma and some are definitely an acquired taste.

From my elementary school health classes, I still remember the Four Basic Food Groups necessary for good health. These are vegetables and fruit, grain foods, milk and milk products, and protein foods. Rick Warren (The Purpose Driven Life) postulates four spiritual food groups that Christians should know:

  • Poison – These are the concepts that will derange, degrade, or demoralize you. Pornography, lust, greed are examples of such spiritual poison.
  • Junk food – Most of the stuff on television is the mental equivalent of junk food.  You’ll find little to no nutritional value in it. Many movies and novels available are empty calories. You can eat junk food, but it will not sustain you.
  • Brain food – This is the “good stuff.” It educates you in areas like math, science, history, English, and geography. You need to feed your mind with this classic educational content. It is real brain food. It will help make you a well-rounded person. 
  • Super food – This is the Bible. God’s Word will teach you what you won’t find anywhere else. It answers fundamental questions like, “Who am I? Where did I come from? Where am I going? Is there a purpose to my life? Am I significant?” You’ll only get answers to those questions in the Bible. We need to feast on God’s Word daily.

We must consider what we feed our minds as diligently as what we feed our physically bodies. The adage from the early days of computers is a truism – “Garbage in – Garbage out”. Be careful what you put in your mind because it effects what comes out.

Scripture addresses the issue of spiritual food. Consider, for example, these verses:

  • Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things(Philippians 4:8).
  • “Why do you spend money for what is not bread, And your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, And delight yourself in abundance” (Isaiah 55:2).
  • “For the bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world” (John 6:33-35).

We are all aware of the anacronym WWJD (What Would Jesus Do?). Perhaps a variation of it could also be helpful as we consider ‘food for thought’- WWJT (what would Jesus think?).

“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5)

~ Brother Roy

Warped and Watered Messages

A drive through almost any city, town or countryside will make a person aware that we are largely a religious country. You can normally observe churches of a wide variety of rich and varied architectural styles. Size also varies from small country churches to mega buildings seating thousands.

As different as the types of structures are, so also are the messages they proclaim. How can you tell which church is true to the teachings of Jesus Christ? That has been a perplexing question from the earliest days of the church. Not all churches are biblically sound. Jesus warned His followers to be cautious. “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves” (Matthew 7:15, NKJV).

As the Church grew, many more warnings were given throughout the New Testament:

  • “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. (2 Timothy 4:3-4)
  • “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1)
  • “But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. (2 Peter 2:1). 
  • “Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away” (2 Timothy 3:5)
  • “If anyone teaches otherwise and does not consent to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which accords with godliness, he is proud, knowing nothing, but is obsessed with disputes and arguments over words, from which come envy, strife, reviling, evil suspicions, useless wranglings of men of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means  of gain. From such withdraw yourself” (1 Timothy 6:3-5)

Sad to say, not all churches are “rightly dividing the word of truth”(2 Timothy 2:15). Their messages are often warped (distorted, misrepresented, twisted) and watered (diluted, weakened). How can you know which churches are of Christ?  First, certainly heed in detail the warning given in the scriptures above. Then, you need to know for yourself what God’s word really says. “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman who needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth(2 Timothy 2:15, KJV).

I believe the scriptures provide us a navigational aid to heaven and home. I believe that scriptures of the Old and New Testaments constitute the divinely inspired Word of God, that they are inerrant in their original writings, without error in all they affirm, the final authority for truth and life. They are the only infallible rule for both faith and practice. A compass always indicates true north, and the Bible always points to absolute truth.

Not all churches embrace the above statement on the authority of scripture. I join with the Apostle Paul, “For what if some did not believe? Will their unbelief make the faithfulness of God without effect? Certainly not! Indeed, let God be true but every man a liar(Romans 3:4).

Embrace the Holy Spirit. “But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have told you” (John 14:26)

Prayer: Lord, help me to detect warped and watered messages and to cling to Your divinely inspired word.

~ Brother Roy

Hearing Problems

Most of us have had the experience of being in a conversation with someone and noticing a blank stare from the other person. Perhaps the other person is thinking of a response or has simply drifted away mentally. There is a disconnect in communication. A colloquial expression from my Eastern Kentucky background says, “The porch light is on, but there is nobody home.”

We serve a speaking God. In the earliest chapters of Genesis, we find God talking to earth’s first couple. From then until the present, it has been the nature of God to desire to communicate with humankind. The problem has never been God’s desire to speak with us; it’s our unwillingness to listen. An intriguing word from the lips of Jesus highlights this problem: “We played the flute for you, And you did not dance; We mourned to you, And you did not lament” (Matthew 11:17, NKJV).

The Bible is filled with accounts of our loving Heavenly Father speaking to individuals, to families, and to nations. And our creative God has not limited Himself to one form of communication: “For God does speak—now one way, now another – though no one perceives it” (Job 33:14, NIV). Scripture tells us that God speaks to all men through creation (see Romans 1:18–20 and Psalm 19:1–2). God has communicated through angels, prophets, dreams, visions, miracles, and even through a donkey that He enabled to speak as a man speaks! (See Luke 1:5–38, II Samuel 24:10–25, Genesis 40:1–23, Daniel 2:1–45, Acts 9:10–18, Exodus 7:8–11:10, and Numbers 22:21–35).

God is speaking. But are we hearing? Unconfessed sins, wrong attitudes, and self-centeredness create distance in our relationship with God, and this distance inhibits our ability hear. Jeremiah, the Old Testament prophet, reports that though God spoke to His people, “Yet they did not listen or incline their ears, but stiffened their necks in order not to listen or take correction” (Jerermiah 17:23). In the New Testament, Jesus said, “For the heart of this people has become dull, With their ears they scarcely hear(Matthew 13:15). When we are having trouble hearing, only confession and repentance will bring us back into that close relationship where we can hear from God again.

Prayer: Lord, we want to hear from You. We confess our sins and repent of anything in us that is not like You. “Speak, for your servant is listening” (1 Samuel 3:10).

~ Brother Roy

This Is an Advertisement

All types of media, including newspapers, television, internet, and even billboards, tout cures, unbelievable values, and products that will make your life better. Merchandisers plan and contrive ways to get you to believe their claims and spend your money for their products. Relying heavily on celebrities, professional pitch people, and personal testimonials, they make incredible claims. Scientific evidence and reliable data are largely absent. ‘Truth in Advertising’ is often stretched to the breaking point. In this profit-driven age, truth seems to be sacrificed on the altar of expediency and profit.   

Recently, a newspaper article caught my attention. It appeared to be a government report based on scientific research, but in the margin and in small print, was the word ‘advertisement’. It is even getting increasing difficult to believe official publications. Agencies such as the FDA receive 75% of their funding from Pharmaceutical Companies. Revelations of political pressure by ideologically-motivated groups on governmental agencies like the CDC and FDA are concerning. Statements like ‘follow the science’ have less to do with science and more to do with opinion.

Advertisers use many ploys. Some attempt to create a want or desire for something we do not need. Presentation of products is often with beautiful people on the beach or at a party of ‘cool’ people. The mantra is drink, party, and be happy. At other times, fear mongering is the tactic. Dire consequences await those who don’t heed their warning and use their product.

In the spiritual realm, similar sales pitches are constant. From Satan’s first scheme in the Garden of Eden, the appeal is that sin has wonderful mind-expanding results. Hawkers declare, “You deserve to be happy!” Indulge yourself and don’t worry – “you shall not surely die.” The ‘Be Happy’ mantra attempts to obscure the end results of Eve-like decisions to disobey God’s word. Even a cursory observation of man’s track record when ignoring Biblical principles should be enough to convince a right-thinking person not to be taken in by Satan’s marketing schemes.

Let me share a few statements related to ‘Truth In Advertising’ from the eternal Word of God:

  • “But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ” (2 Corinthians 11:3, NKJV).
  • “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life”  (Galatians 6:7-8, NKJV).
  • And Jesus answered and said to them: “Take heed that no one deceives you …For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders that would deceive even the elect, if that were possible” (Matthew 24:4-5, NKJV).
  • Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ” (Colossians 2:8, NKJV).

WARNING LABEL: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour(1 Peter 5:8, NKJV).

~ Brother Roy

Taste and See (A New Perspective)

It is interesting how a familiar verse of scripture can take on new significance as circumstances change. On July 25, 2016, I posted a devotional on the NHIM website titled, ‘Taste and See’. The devotional had its origins in pleasant childhood memories of my mother’s cooking. This time a painful event shed new light on the same scripture.  

A recent bout with Covid brought a different consideration of Psalm 34:8 – “Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good.” One of the effects of the Covid virus is the loss of taste and smell. Although the loss of taste may not be life-threating, it certainly is a serious and disheartening problem. My love of home cooking and comfort foods are high on my list of life’s pleasures. The inability to enjoy the taste of favorite foods is a depressing prospect.

Application of the concept of ‘loss of taste’ to my spiritual life led to some interesting observations. Sin, like Covid, can have many far-reaching effects on a person. The end result may even be death, as it was for millions of Covid victims. But, other consequences that may not be fatal can create problems for people with compromised health issues. A combination of these issues can also contribute to a person’s demise. Comparisons of the impact of Covid (physical) and sin (spiritual) merit consideration:

  • Physical: When your sense of taste declines, meals lose their appeal. Eating too little can put you at risk for malnutrition, dehydration, unhealthy weight loss and possible death.
    Spiritual: Sin dulls the hunger for God’s Word. The soul suffers malnutrition, vulnerability to temptation, and mortality.
  • Physical: To give bland food flavor, you may add too much sugar or salt. These additions can increase your risk of diabetes, high blood pressure , and other critical conditions.
    Spiritual: Alcohol, drugs, or illicit sex (including pornography) are often added to spice up a dull life without the Lord.
  • Physical: Lack of smell and taste puts you at risk for food poisoning, because you can’t tell when foods have spoiled or are contaminated.
    Spiritual: Sin so muffles our spiritual sensitivity that we do not recognize the concealed poison of forbidden things.
  • Physical: The inability to smell fire, smoke, gas, or harmful chemicals in your home or surroundings puts you at grave risk. 
    Spiritual: Sin deadens our ability to detect toxic substances that may be fatal.

God’s call is for us to be re-awakened to His love and goodness on a daily basis. We have a loving heavenly Father who is wanting to overshadow us daily with His guidance and blessings. Come into a new awareness of God’s love, goodness, and faithfulness. Allow your spiritual taste to be restored today by “prayer and supplication with thanksgiving” (Philippians 4:6, NKJV).

His invitation to us: “Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good”.

~ Brother Roy

Two Funerals

During my lifetime, the world has never seen a funeral as majestic as that of Queen Elizabeth II. The pomp and circumstance was witnessed in person by tens of thousands and seen by untold millions around the world through the media. These impressive formal activities and ceremonies filled hundreds of hours on multiple media venues.

Contrast this with the funeral of God’s only son, “whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds(Hebrews 1:2, NKJV). God’s word declares; “Through Him all things were made, and without Him nothing was made that has been made” (John 1:3). Scripture proclaims, “He is Lord of lords and King of kings” (Revelation 17:14, KJV). Yet, at the Lord’s death, His brutally beaten and disfigured body was taken down from the executioner’s cross and deposited in a borrowed tomb. The vigil over His battered remains was likely the same soldiers who mocked Him, cast lots for His soiled garments, and nailed Him to the cross.

But, oh my friends, the end is not yet! There is a final chapter to these two funerals.

The next event on the calendar for Queen Elizabeth II will be the Judgement. “And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27, NKJV). In spite of all the symbols of worldly wealth and power that was trumpeted at her earthly passing, she will stand like everyone else at the Judgement. “And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books” (Revelation 20:12, NKJV).

The brutal death and crude burial of Jesus was not the end either. After His resurrection, He ascended to heaven and took His place at the right hand of God the Father Almighty. John shares this picture, which is as glorious as Jesus’ death was hideous: “And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns! Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.”  And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints. Then he said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’ ” And he said to me, “These are the true sayings of God.” (Revelation 19:6-9, NKJV).

We will all experience death and some kind of funeral. But, that will not be the end. We will all stand before God. He has called all believers to come to ‘the marriage supper of the Lamb’. Are you ready?

Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live (John 11:25, NKJV).

~ Brother Roy

A Pop-Up Storm

I was sitting on my patio deck enjoying a sunny, warm day. The clear sky and gentle breeze had lulled me into a ‘semi-conscious’ state. A sudden flash of lightening and a clap of thunder jarred me to attention. Scurrying for shelter, I remembered the morning weathercast – “There is a possibility of a pop-up thunderstorm.” And here it was!

Safe inside, a quick internet search about pop-up storms revealed the following: High humidity, in conjunction with warm temperatures, creates massive amounts of warm, moist air rising into the atmosphere, where it can easily form a thunderstorm. These disorganized, individual thunderstorm cells are single-cell thunderstorms. The reason they often appear random is because we don’t have the capability of predicting exactly where and when local conditions are just right for storm initiation.

Later, while reflecting on the event, the thought came to me that types of pop-up storms not only occur in the world of weather, but also have parallels in other areas of life. The rhythm of everyday life can sometimes dull our senses to an impending psychological, physical, or emotional storm. Suddenly, a storm can roll into our lives. Scripture has provided us with a ‘weather forecast’ – or, should I say, a ‘life forecast’. Jesus said, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33, NIV).

While these random, pop-up storms of life may take us by surprise, they need not overwhelm us. Scripture and reasoned thought, validated by observation, lead us to understand that in this life “you will have trouble.” With this awareness, we should prepare for the unexpected. “Sensible people will see trouble coming and avoid it, but an unthinking person will walk right into it and regret it later(Proverbs 22:3, GNT).

God’s word promises us that we can have peace in the face of life’s uncertainties. Walking daily with Jesus, spending time in God’s word, and maintaining a consistent prayer life will prepare us for the surprise of pop-up events.

Blessed Assurance:   “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord(Romans 8:38-39, NIV).

~ Brother Roy

What’s Left Behind at Shechem

Jacob Burying The Strange Gods Under The Oak By Shechem (Sebastien Bourdon)

When Abraham was living in Ur of the Chaldeans, the Lord called him to leave his home country and go “to the land which I will show you” (Genesis 12:1).  So Abraham (who was then called Abram) did as the Lord said and, not knowing where he was destined, journeyed to Canaan.  And when Abram arrived there, he found a great tree at Shechem, sometimes called the Oak of Moreh, and in the shade of that great tree, the Lord appeared to Abram and promised, “To your descendants I will give this land” (Genesis 12:6-7).  And Abram marked that site with an altar to the Lord, acknowledging the covenant that had been made between them.

Time and generations passed, and Abraham’s grandson, Jacob, who had been forced to flee Canaan for fear of his life, returned to the land God had promised his grandfather.  In his time away, Jacob had acquired wives who honored foreign gods (Genesis 31:19). After arriving back in Canaan, Jacob’s sons, in avenging a horrible wrong done to their sister, murdered the men of an entire city and took all of their households, including their pagan idols, for their own (Genesis 34).

Jacob could sense that the wheels were falling off his return to claim his inheritance, to the point that he feared that he might be destroyed in the very land promised to him as a descendant of Abraham. God’s prescription for dealing with these problems was to call Jacob to worship.  But before Jacob could worship the one and only holy God, he knew he would need to rid himself of the presence and influence of the false gods his household had picked up along the way.  So Jacob ordered his family and all who were with him to relinquish their foreign gods, and Jacob buried them under the oak at Shechem.

Time and generations passed again – slavery in Egypt, the Exodus, wandering in the wilderness, and finally the return to Canaan.  The great leader Joshua gathered the people of Israel, the descendants of Jacob, the descendants of Abraham, once again at the oak tree at Shechem.  And Joshua called on the people to do away with the gods of their ancestors beyond the Euphrates River and the gods of their enslavers in Egypt and serve the Lord alone: “Choose for yourselves today whom you will serve…as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord” (Joshua 24:15).  So the people made a covenant that day, beneath the oak at Shechem, to serve the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

The great tree at Shechem was a place where things were left behind.  There Abraham left any uncertainty he had about the inheritance that he had pursued by faith, as God showed him the land that would be given to his descendants.  There Jacob left the idols his household had accumulated and went forth to worship the One True God.  There Joshua and the people of Israel left the false gods of their ancestors and their oppressors and pledged to serve the Lord.

Before we can move forward to pursue the life of righteousness that God desires for us, there are things that we must leave behind.  It won’t be a tree in Shechem where we lay aside the weight of accumulated baggage – perhaps it will be the altar at a revival, or a bedside, or a church pew, or someplace else of personal significance.  Where will your “Shechem” be?  And what will you need to leave there?

“Therefore, since we also have such a great cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let’s rid ourselves of every obstacle and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let’s run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking only at Jesus, the originator and perfecter of the faith…” (Hebrews 12:1-2)

~ Matt Kinnell, NHIM Board Chair

Stone Fences

Gray rock fences built of ancient limestone are hallmarks of Kentucky’s Bluegrass landscape. As iconic as the white board fences and beautiful thoroughbred horses are, these amazing stone fences reflect the very character of Kentucky. The earliest settlers in Kentucky built dry-laid fences around eighteenth-century farmsteads, cemeteries, and mills. Fence-building increased dramatically during the nineteenth century so that by the 1880s stone fences lined most roads, bounding pastures and farmyards throughout the Bluegrass. It is likely that the Bluegrass may have the most extensive collection of rock fences in North America.

What made stone such a widespread choice for fences in the Bluegrass? The stones were abundant. Masons need a minimum of tools to erect structures that are remarkably durable, yet are easily repaired if damaged. They resist fire, water, and insects. If correctly designed, they are earthquake resistant. The work does not deplete natural resources, and they aesthetically complement and enhance the landscape.

Stone fences have a multitude of good uses:

  • Establishing Boundaries: Fences can mark boundaries and property lines.
  • Keeping Harmful Things Out: Fences can keep unwanted livestock and other animals out.
  • Protecting Assets: Fences can help keep valued livestock and other animals within their proper domain.

Considering the stone fences of the Bluegrass, a spiritual parallel can be seen. The Lord himself referenced good fences: “Then He (Jesus) began to speak to them in figurative language. “There was once a man,” He said, “who planted a vineyard, fenced it, dug a pit for the wine-tank, and built a strong lodge”  (Mark 12:1). Spiritual fences are for our benefit. Believers are a planting of the Lord. It is His plan that we prosper and produce fruit.

For the same reasons noted above with stone fences, God has reasons for surrounding us with a spiritual fence:

  • Establishing Boundaries: If we are to prosper, we must know where the boundaries lie. Establishing proper limits is one of the major challenges of our day. The Holy Spirit can guide us in this crucial task. We must set spiritual boundaries and honor them. “For in him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28).
  • Keeping Harmful Things Out: So many things around us try to crowd in and occupy space and time that belongs to the Lord. Trespassers in the form of unwanted ideas, outside influences, unhealthy relationships, even religious activities can consume valuable resources and time.
  • Protecting Assets: Proper spiritual fencing can also help us retain priceless assets. In the hectic pace of life, important spiritual truths tend to slip away. Surrounded by His love and protection, we can hold on to truth and grow and prosper.

‘Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord, for our hope is in you alone’ (Psalm 33:22).

~ Brother Roy