The Time is Now. Wake Up and Stand.

Several days ago, I read this article about ISIS supporters hacking the Albuquerque Journal. Here are some of the highlights.

“You’ll see no mercy, infidels. We are already here, we are in your PCs, in each house, in each office. With All-h’s permission we begin with Albuquerque.”

The hackers continued with their message to Albuquerque residents,

“While the us [sic] and its satellites are bombing the Islamic State, we broke into your home networks and personal devices and know everything about you. We know all personal data of Albuquerque locals: Where you live, what you eat, your diseases and even your health insurance cards. You will look around more often, will call up your children more often, think of your security more often, but that won’t help you.”

As I read this, so many emotions began to fill me. I was angry, determined, annoyed, amused and, yet, scared.

Yes, I was scared as I read this article. I was scared, not of having to face this evil or of what they could do to me, but of not being able to stand firm. That is the most terrifying thought to me; that in “that day,” I won’t be able to stand for YHVH. That is my biggest fear…that I would fail Him.

I’ve been saying it for a while and have been hearing it preached for even longer, but the day is quickly coming where we will have to take a stand. Time is running short. We MUST be prepared. The days of putting it off and ignoring the truth because it doesn’t make us happy or comfortable or whatever are over. Look at this message. Granted this is small potatoes compared to what’s happening in other places across the country and the globe, but it shows us that we cannot think we are immune. We cannot believe the lie that this evil can’t touch us; that it won’t come here.

Because it already has.

Now, I’m not trying to say that the terror group ISIS is actually in the United States or Albuquerque, New Mexico but make no mistake…their ideology is here.  ISIS the terrorist group may not be here yet but their supporters are. Their way of thinking is. Remember the woman beheaded in Oklahoma a few months ago? Or what about the fact that numerous ISIS fighters have come from France, Britain, the U.S., and other Western countries?

And what are we doing? We are sitting in our comfortable homes ignoring the news, turning a deaf ear to those speaking truth simply because we don’t want to hear it. We don’t want to believe this could happen to us. We don’t want our perfect little worlds filled with only happy thoughts and motivational mantras to be shattered. We don’t want to care about anything other than taking the perfect picture of whatever we’re doing from moment to moment in hopes that people will believe our lives are actually as perfect as our pictures suggest.

ENOUGH!

The time has come for us to make a decision; to stop playing games. We will have to choose what we believe and how much it is worth to us. The time has come and we MUST take a stand for truth.

Blow a ram’s horn in Zion, and sound an alarm in My holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the earth tremble, for the day of YHVH is coming, for it is near: a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness, like the morning clouds spread over the mountains – a people many and strong, the like of whom has never been, nor shall there ever be again after them, to the years of many generations. Joel 2:1-2

But we shouldn’t fear…myself included. If we have been doing the hard work then we will be ready. If you haven’t been doing the hard work to prepare then it’s time to start; there’s still time. But don’t delay. Start now. Ask YHVH to show you what areas of your life need to be corrected so that on the day of your testing you will be prepared and YOU WILL STAND.

Ask YHVH to show you what you must do to prepare. Ask Him what areas of your life have become a hindrance in your walk with Him.

The enemy has been preparing and is ready to lose their lives for what they believe. Are we?

That is why He says, “Wake up, you who sleep, and arise from the dead, and Messiah shall shine on you.” See then that you walk exactly, not as unwise, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are wicked. So then do not be foolish, but understand what the desire of YHVH is. Ephesians 5:14-17

None of this is meant to scare anyone because the truth is that YHVH, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, holds every moment of each of our lives in His hands. We are secure. But it is time to wake up.

The time has come for each one of us to wake up and hear the shofar blowing. It’s time to return to Torah and repent for turning our backs on the truth of YHVH. No longer can we sit comfortably in our homes shutting out the ugly reality that sits just outside our doors.

The King of Glory is coming and if we don’t wake up, He will find us unaware and unprepared.

Just like the parable of the 10 virgins, the Bridegroom will linger. But what we do while we wait for His return is vital. Will we be like the 5 wise virgins who brought extra oil for their lamps or will we be like the 5 foolish virgins who had not prepared for the return of the Bridegroom?

All 10 virgins knew the wedding was taking place. They all knew who the bridegroom was. And yet, not all of them had done the hard work to prepare and were sadly locked out of the wedding feast.

The shofar is blowing and screaming for those with ears to hear to wake up! This is a wake-up call for me too. Every morning we (you, me, all believers in Messiah Yeshua) need to put on the full armor of YHVH. We must be equipped for the battles we will face and that are yet to come.

For the rest, my brothers, be strong in the Master and in the mightiness of His strength. Put on the complete armor of Elohim, for you to have power to stand against the schemes of the devil. Because we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against authorities, against the world-rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual matters of wickedness in the heavenlies. Because of this, take up the complete armor of Elohim, so that you have power to withstand in the wicked day, and having done all, to stand. Ephesians 6:10-13

No longer can we sit by passively watching the world fall apart thinking it won’t touch us; thinking we can avoid it. No! The time has come where we must make a decision about what’s important to us. What do we believe? What do we stand for? Who do we stand for? Who will we become?

And after we have done all this, we must stand.

A Whiny Attitude, a Game of Laser Tag, and the City of Ferguson

There is complete lawlessness in Ferguson after the decision not to indict Officer Wilson in the death of Michael Brown. Many residents say they are heartbroken over the verdict and, understandably, Brown’s parents are devastated.

But this does not in any way justify the vandalism and destruction that are sweeping the city of Ferguson. In my honest opinion, I feel that this situation was merely an excuse used by these renegades in order to do whatever they wanted. This is complete lawlessness and there is no justification for it.

And in the process of wreaking havoc and chaos across the city, these dissenters are blinded to the hypocrisy that they are doing the very thing they say they are “protesting.” They are hurting, not helping, the community of Ferguson. Never mind the fact that in the immediate aftermath of Michael Brown’s death, many of the so-called “protestors” were bussed in from other cities or weren’t actual residents of Ferguson. But now these same miscreants are destroying the city and making it impossible for local business owners to conduct their business.Ferguson Natalie DuBose

Take Natalie DuBose for instance. This woman worked for years selling her cakes in the local area to save money to buy her store. Now, that same store has been destroyed. It was one of the shops that was attacked during the chaos.

This is so sad. This woman worked so hard to own her own business and these butt-faced miscreants destroyed it!

These rioters say they protest the “unfair” decision in Ferguson, yet, can’t see how unfair it is that they should loot and burn someone else’s hard work and livelihood to the ground.

They say they are protesting the unfair treatment of minorities; yet, don’t see how they have done more to keep this woman (a minority!) and others down more than anyone else!

Here is a list of the other businesses that have (so far) been looted and/or burned in Ferguson.

St.Louis Fish & Chicken Grill
Family Dollar
Dollar Tree
O’Reilly’s Auto Parts
Beauty Mart
A.J. & R. Pawn Shop
Walgreens
FedEx
Cakes and More [Natalie DuBose’s store]
JC Wireless
AT&T
STL Bread Company
Conoco
Auto Buy Credit
Phillips 66
McDonald’s
Red’s Barbecue
Taco Bell
CVS
Beauty Town
Little Caesar’s
Ferguson Liquor
Public Storage
Sam’s Meat Market
Medicine Shop
Commerce Bank
Auto Zone
Toys R Us
Amoco
Quiznos
Dellwood Market
Chop Suey restaurant
TitleMax
Antonio French’s Heal Stl Community Center

Think of all the local business owners and workers (including those that are minorities) at these establishments that now have to foot the cost of rebuilding and repairing what these troublemakers destroyed. When these local businesses fail, the entire community suffers. That’s a loss of jobs, money back into the local economy, and people’s livelihood; but more than that, it’s a loss of the sense of pride and accomplishment within the community.ferguson_021_081414-620x412

Who would want to live in this community now? Who wants to move and raise a family at the site of such violence and chaos? The entire community of Ferguson will suffer because of the actions of these criminals.

Isn’t it the same for us in the body of Messiah? We are all connected, and when one of us fails, we all suffer; we all lose out. We need to learn that our actions affect those around us and start taking responsibility for our actions.

We need to remember that we are all one body and when we don’t do the hard work so that we’re ready for battle, the entire body suffers.

I recently played laser tag for a friend’s birthday. We played 3 games and halfway through the second game, I had had my fill of jumping around and ducking and hiding from lasers. I decided since I was done that I would just stop. If people wanted to shoot at me, whatever. If they wanted to follow me and score points from shooting me, Have. At. It. I was done. Mature, I know…

But then I remembered something…my team. I was one person, but I was part of a team. I was no longer an individual. My actions effected each person on my team. If I was shot at, then we all lost points. If I gave up, then that was one less person working for our success. I couldn’t just stop playing if I didn’t feel like it anymore.

The same goes for all of us as believers. We are part of a team and our actions for those around us. If we refuse to do the hard work or to not properly prepare, our entire team suffers the consequences. Maybe it’s not fair but that’s the way it works.

But the opposite side of that coin is that when we all chose to fix the issues the LORD reveals to us, we all succeed!

So let Ferguson, and my whiny attitude during laser tag, be a lesson to all of us. We are all connected and one bad decision rarely affects just one person. We must all exercise self-discipline, correct the areas in our lives that will keep us from playing our parts, and start taking responsibility for our actions.

We too, then, having so great a cloud of witnesses all around us, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race set before us – Romans 12:1