This is what the Lord says: “You will be in Babylon for seventy years. But then I will come and do for you all the good things I have promised, and I will bring you home again. 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. 12 In those days when you pray, I will listen. 13 If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. 14 I will be found by you,” says the Lord. “I will end your captivity and restore your fortunes. I will gather you out of the nations where I sent you and will bring you home again to your own land.”
Yesterday I attended a local new church start. This was my second Sunday there. God has filled me with a desire to come alongside other pastors and church leaders to help build UP the church. When I say church- I am talking about the universal church-not a denomination. God has told me that I am to encourage, equip and empower ALL of God’s people, not just some or part. I see myself as a “hometown missionary” listening very closely and going to minister where He leads me. Sometimes it is with youth groups and kids and other times with adults and groups. Lately it has been at this little church that sits next to a hayfield on a little dirt road in Carroll County.
It wasn’t long ago that God told me that my “field” was right here, right now. I am beginning to see why He said that.
There is a sweet, sweet spirit there-it is the spirit of our precious Jesus in the people. I found out yesterday that this group of people started this church many years ago-as a bible study. Over the years it has grown, things have happened and a pastor was being molded. They used to meet in a field and just recently they found this old abandoned church on a farm. They have been there about 6 weeks now-I’ve been there 2.
The church is about 200 years old. It has wooden slatted seats, a pulpit, and many hearts that are hungering for God. It is a place to call “home.” Yesterday a little Chihuahua wandered in and sat among us. There is no power, no a/c, no nothing. There is nothing to get in the way of what God is doing there. No traditions, no religious rules, no instruments, no big screens, nothing but you and an anointed woman who is on fire for the Lord, doing exactly what God called her to do- to be JESUS to the people.
GLORY TO GOD!!!!!!!!!!!
That’s what I call faith.
I have heard two of the best sermons I’ve ever heard in the past two weeks. This little church has MORE than you could ever imagine. It has heart. A HUGE heart. These folks are running after God-ALL of them IN UNITY. When we run in the same direction with the Holy Spirit we get where we need to go- don’t we?
That’s the only power we need- is the wonder working power of the Holy Spirit!
Someone had told me about this new church start so last week I called the pastor on Saturday night and met her Sunday morning. Immediately God had impressed on her for me to share the ministry I do through art during that morning’s service. So I did. Well, one thing led to another and another and the HS impressed upon me to give the church the three paintings I had in my car, as a gift. I shared them with the congregation and a man jumped up in the back and he said, “ Last week I said we needed some paintings to hang on the walls and here you are with paintings!”
Here are the paintings…( one day I will write a book from these blogposts…)
“The Finger of God has touched my heart.”
( spoken by one of my church members from Glenwood UMC. God has carried her testimony into a painting and took it to this little church to be used to teach others about His power.)
“ Garment of Praise” ( inspired as I was praying for a family in my congregation last year. This little girl desires to know Jesus. She no longer attends the church. This is my painted declaration over her life-that she SEE’S and knows Jesus and that He IS the VICTORY in her life. This is my way of saying “ I believe.” ) Now this little church is praying for her too.
This is a piece I did for the kids at Glenwood. “Love the Lord” the entire scripture is written out. I handed it to the pastor and told her to use this to teach the children.
There were more children there yesterday!
All of these paintings were inspired by the Holy Spirit as I ministered to the folks at Glenwood UMC and now they are hanging in this little church on a country road in Carroll County. They are a testimony of the GOD who lives and breathes and has HIS WAY with us.
Here’s the very best part of this story….
A man in the congregation got up and gave his testimony yesterday. He explained how he could not read well and that his little boy handed him a children’s book with a bible story in it and asked him to read it to him. So he did the best that he could and it was the pictures- the art work –that helped him understand the story. Most men would not have gotten up in church and said anything, let alone that.
Listen to me….GOD is AT WORK in EVERY SINGLE THING WE DO. HE WANTS TO KNOW YOU and HE WANTS YOU TO KNOW HIM ….THROUGH A CHILD’S BOOK!!!!
A child shall lead them….
It became very evident to me as to why I was being drawn there. (no pun intended.)
I love how GOD WORKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
By the way…the name of the church is “Harmony….”
This is why I paint…to be continued…there’s more…