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21 entries from April 2017

The Book of Esther: The Position and Authority of Mordecai

Esther, mosaic, Jerusalem-The Church of Hagia Maria Zion-The Dormition Church For such a time as this… Hello, my dear SUM family. I’m so excited to share this last part of the Esther series, because you are about to see something new. Something new that only God could do. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. — Isaiah 43:19 (ESV) Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told. — Habakkuk 1:5 (ESV) These two verses are very near and dear to my heart, my friends, because for seven years straight, God would bring these two verses to my attention around September. And every year I would take note of this and... Read more →

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This IS the SUMite Nation - Survey Results

SUMite Nation Thank you for walking with me through the Revelation of Love series. It’s now over. Dineen and I chatted yesterday and we are going to respond to the survey that we took back in March. We will be writing in response to your questions and topics that are of interest or need. I was overwhelmed by the responses. First, I was astonished by the sheer number of replies and the details everyone offered. Wow, you know what that tells me? You are very much invested in this community. You genuinely feel connected in our family. You genuinely have HOPE in Jesus for your family, your marriage, your spouse and for each other who meet here daily. (I think I already knew that but it was so cool to see it confirmed in the survey.) I asked the question: Do you visit our website Via: PC, mobile device or... Read more →

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Winning Him Without Words

Prayer Lord, thank You that I am never alone. You promised You would never leave me nor forsake me, and I will rest in this truth. Today I am committed to restoring happiness and hope to my marriage. Teach me to take my eyes off my circumstances and focus completely on You. I seat You firmly on the throne of my life. Father, today I recommit my life and my marriage to You. Create a powerful yearning in me to meet with You every day. Teach me Your truths to live by and reveal Your desire for my life and the life of my spouse. Restore optimism in my heart for our future. Empower me to cling to my faith when my husband is unfriendly toward You. Bring into my life other believers who are Jesus with “skin on.” Lord, lavish Your love on me that I may pour it... Read more →

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The Book of Esther: Enemies Destroyed and a New Holiday

Esther, mosaic, Jerusalem-The Church of Hagia Maria Zion-The Dormition Church For such a time as this… SUMites, when we last left Esther and Mordecai, the king had given them Mordecai his signet ring (authority). Esther seems to hold such great favor with the king that just her explanation of her relationship to Mordecai results in this transfer of authority. Esther again speaks to the king, falling at his feet in tears as she pleads for the lives of her people. The king gives both her and Mordecai permission to do what they feel best to save the Jews. The king’s scribes are summoned and a new proclamation is written to “react” to the one Haman had made. Since a Persian’s king’s decree could not be revoked, this counter attack was the best way to stop the annihilation of the Jewish population. Once again, the God of the Jews is protecting... Read more →

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A Revelation of Love For My Husband

They say.... Love is blind. But, marriage is a real eye-opener! My friends, a few weeks ago, my husband, whom I refer to as my pre-believer, celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary. As I remember through the seasons of our union, I recall the challenges, the laughter, the fun and the really hard times as well. But mostly as I consider this landmark in our marriage, I find that the difficult years have been replaced with peace. Struggles and fear have been given over to unconditional love and acceptance. We are truly living the abundant life and our marriage is sanctified through my faith, as the believer in our home (1 Corinthians 7:14). Mike and I are planning a European Cruise this summer to celebrate and spend time alone together. But what I found interesting is that the Lord gave me a gift for our marriage anniversary. It was unexpected and... Read more →

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The Book of Esther: The Queen Risks Everything

Esther, mosaic, Jerusalem-The Church of Hagia Maria Zion-The Dormition Church For such a time as this… My friends, we’re moving deeper into the story of Esther where things are moving much faster and starting to heat up in a big way. We left the story with Queen Esther’s life hanging in the balance. As chapter five opens, Queen Esther has put on her royal robes (put on her best dress) and enters the king’s throne room. We hold our breath and wait. What will her fate be? Yet we know who, I mean WHO, has her back, right? With God behind her, she is destined for victory. Just as we are, my friends. Often, it’s all in how we look at it. Like Mordecai, we can turn every situation upside down and ask God, “What do you want to do here? What are the possibilities?” King Xerxes extends his scepter,... Read more →

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Sumite Prayer Partners - A Prayer of Renewal

Hi prayer family, Christy Edney here. Please join me in prayer, Matthew 22:37 Jesus replied, "You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment." Father, this often quoted verse is quite familiar to us but, what if we truly lived by these words? How would your Holy Spirit impact our marriages, families and the world around us? Lord, I believe that there are no limits to your power, you can and will move in any way that you see fit. However, you have created us to be creatures of choice, free to choose the object of our focus. Today I am asking you to use this Easter season as an opportunity to realign our focus. Set your people on fire with the love of Christ, teach us to live obedient, authentic and abundant lives... Read more →

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500th Anniversary Of The Last Great Reformation

500th Anniversary of The Great Reformation Did you know that this year, 2017, is the 500th anniversary of the Great Reformation? On October 31, 1517 Luther posted his 95 Theses on the door of the church in Germany…. Now get this, Luther and many other church fathers of the time were looking at the corruption of the church and the government. Hmmmmm, do we today have corruption of the church and government? Likely, as there is always some degree of this in both, all the time. It just appears that the corruption is growing exponentially. The church is moving away from centuries of teaching on sexual purity. There is so much arguing between the many streams of faith and we, the church, spend more time fighting each other than the devil and his works. Don’t even get me started on the corruption in government. I’ve been doing a lot of... Read more →

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The Book of Esther: Haman's Plot and Mordecai's Plea

Esther, mosaic, Jerusalem-The Church of Hagia Maria Zion-The Dormition Church For such a time as this… SUMites, are you as riveted by this story as I am? The intrigue thickens as we walk into chapter three. Mordecai continues to refuse to bow to Haman or explain why to the other gate officials when asked. These men bring this to Haman's attention to see if it will be tolerated. Sound familiar? Everyone watched to see if former Queen Vashti's refusal of the king would be tolerated as well. All eyes are on the king waiting to see precedent set. We see the same mentality today in our own political arenas, my friends. It's like a pack mentality. Haman is now alert to Mordecai's ongoing refusal and is enraged. He has learned who Mordecai's people are and decides he the idea of just killing Mordecai isn't enough. He wasn't to eliminate all... Read more →

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He Has Risen.... Just As He Said

Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20 Read more →

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The LIGHT

Can you imagine the pain in the disciple’s hearts? I can’t help but place myself in Peter’s shoes. Two days ago, I pledged to Christ that I would die for Him. And yesterday I betrayed, lied, and abandoned the author of my Life. I feel a pit in my stomach. Not only because of Peter but the times I did the same thing. Where I failed to stand up for truth. When I could have mentioned the Healer to my neighbor but was ashamed that I would look stupid. Agh!!! Surely, I’m not the only one. Today: At the request of the Jewish leadership, Pilate grants a guard and sets a seal on the tomb of Jesus. Read more →

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Friday Darkness

It's dark and all seems lost. BUT.... Today's Events: First trial, before Annas [nightime hours]; Annas is looking for an accusation, biding time till Sanhedrin is gathered at High Priestly villa Second [and primary] trial before Sanhedrin, Jesus is condemned, misused Third trial, immediately at dawn [meanwhile, Peter denies Jesus a third time; Jesus looks upon him]; the condemnation repeated, then Jesus taken to Romans Fourth trial before Pilate [till "beginning at Galilee"] Fifth trial before Herod [looks for miracle] 6th trial before Pilate Jesus is scourged; the city cries, "Crucify Him or we will tell Rome!" Jesus is finally turned over to be crucified Jesus mocked (Roman soldiers); crown of thorns Judas hangs himself Jesus bears His cross to gate on north of city and is crucified around 9 am Jesus' Seven Sayings from the Cross "Father, forgive them..." "Today...with me in paradise" "Woman, behold thy son..." [darkness: noon... Read more →

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Thursday Betrayal

Thursday Events: Peter and John sent to make preparation for Passover meal After sunset, eats meal with the twelve; washes disciples; Judas departs Lord's Supper instituted To Garden of Gethsemane; Jesus' agony Betrayal by Judas; arrest by Sanhedrin To house of High Priest as Sanhedrin is convened; Peter betrays Jesus BETRAYAL Betrayal…. Thursday is a bitter darkness. I don’t know about you, but for me, I can forgive easily …. except when I’ve been betrayed. Anyone??? There is something that breaks in the core of our being when we give trust to someone who didn’t keep our life, our secrets, and our heart safe. I find that Jesus is calling me on this Thursday, before we move toward Easter, to let go of betrayal. Enter into this place with me. It can feel like hell to surrender the hurt that is so deep that it feels like it will pull... Read more →

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Lenten Reflections: Holy Week - Hope in His Divinity and Humanness

Image courtesy of ikpro and FreeDigitalPhotos.net Aren’t you loving Lynn’s Holy Week reflections? I feel a little like an interloper with my post this week but as I sought the Lord on what to post I kept coming back to: HOPE. “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.” (John 11:25) Death is not the end. The story is not over on Good Friday. Jesus defeats death and is resurrected on Easter Sunday and in so doing gives us the opportunity to have relationship with the Father. Not just now but forever. We have an eternal hope. Desire for Connection I’d never really considered the significant number of intimate moments that occur during this week that is often called “Passion Week”. I was drawn to them by a couple of posts I read. Let’s look at some of them:... Read more →

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Tuesday's Journey

Tuesday's Events: Leaves Bethany Finds the fig tree withered; teaches on faith Possesses the temple and its precincts; confounds and pronounces woes upon His enemies Leaves city; Olivet Discourse on way back to Bethany Judas bargains with Sanhedrin to betray Jesus Spends the night in Bethany On this day Jesus pours out so much teaching. Read Matthew 25 & 26. The story of the 10 talents always gives me comfort. God gives us responsibilities for His Kingdom according to our gifting and ability. He never intended for us to perform at a superior level beyond what we are capable. But only asked us to be diligent with what we have. What a relief. Today I want to leave this passage with you: "But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant. And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted." - Jesus... Read more →

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Busy Monday In The Temple

It’s Monday in the Old City. Jerusalem is all a buzz that Jesus, the healer, is at the Temple. Reading through the events of Passion Week Monday, this verse, jumped out at me: Following Jesus’ rebuke to the religious leaders where He said, “It is written, ‘My House shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a “den of thieves.’” Then the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them. -Matthew 21:13-14 Jesus healed them!!!! Amen and AMEN!!! On Monday Jesus: Leaves Bethany Curses the fig tree on the way into the city Weeps over Jerusalem Cleanses the temple for the second time in His ministry Late in day, looks into the Temple, then leaves the city Spends the night in Bethany I wonder if we might consider an event that occurred earlier in Matthew. Just then a woman who... Read more →

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The Triumphant Entry

SUM Nation, Dineen and I have decided to push the series we are writing into next week because the LORD is prompting us to lead our SUM church through a week of reflection on Easter. The Holy Spirit impressed upon me to take this week to reflect on each day the events of the Passion Week and allow us to walk with Jesus through it. The death and resurrection of Christ split time in two. It brought about the salvation of the Gentiles and it forever took the keys of death from satan. The implications of the shed blood are freedom, deliverance, healing and protection. So, walk this week with me as I post a few short scriptures and the events of the week. Ask Jesus to include you into this week. Let the truth of this week and Resurrection Sunday change your life. Also, begin to pray about asking... Read more →

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What, This Day, Shall You Choose?

I never would have imagined how God has responded to my weeks of crying out for a revelation of love. What is amazing is that God responds. He really does. The implications of this alone, at times really boggles my mind. The God of the Universe responds to lil’ ole’ me. ….. and to you too! Okay, since God’s reply to my heart, He told me He was pouring our His Spirit on all Flesh. I’ve experienced some crazy stuff in the last few weeks. And I’ve received some astonishing emails from you, the SUMites, with stories of God’s interactions and the comments of the blog.... FANTASTIC. In fact, just reading Ian’s posts and his comments, we are in the same classroom along with so many of you. Before we go forward, can I ask you a question? Do you believe God’s Word? Can you hope and believe that Acts... Read more →

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Lenten Reflections: Week 6 – The Great Miracle of Easter

I got inspiration for this week’s post from an article in the latest edition of Christianity Today where the writer makes the reference to the “most astonishing Easter miracle”1 in a discussion centred on identity politics. And it got me thinking. The resurrection is spectacular and Jesus defeated death and our sinfulness to restore our ability to have relationship with God. It is pivotal to the gospel. But 40 or so days later the Holy Spirit arrived on the day of Pentecost and with that came another great miracle: Christ living in us. “Christ in us, the hope of glory.” (Colossians 1:27) We are united in Christ. Paul is so excited about this revelation that he uses the phrase “over 200 times in his letters.” “The most distinctive mark of Christians is this: We are people in whom the resurrected Christ dwells (Ephesians 3:17).” 2 Wow. Having meditated upon Colossians... Read more →

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An Astonishing Move of God and a Song

This picture hangs above my prayer wall. My friends, I need to just step out of our Esther series for a moment, because the Holy Spirit impressed upon me to share an astonishing story with you. I’ve spoken many times about my work in the Healing Rooms of Manatee, which is turning out to be a big part of why God brought us back to Sarasota. I love serving as a team trainer and having the opportunity to minister to and pray with people face to face. And what God is doing there leaves me speechless most days. Because He is amazing. Just recently we’ve witnessed a person healed of ALS. The doctors can now find no evidence of this disease in this person’s body! Praise Jesus! But God did something entirely different last week. He wrapped a very personal event in my life into another person’s—someone I barely even... Read more →

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The Pouring Out Of His Spirit = Breakthroughs

I’ve hinted for months and told everyone and anyone who will listen that this year, 2017 is a year of breakthrough and healing (emotional and physical) for the Church. I’m convinced God is healing His people to prepare them for the Great Revival and the salvation of a billion souls. This statement isn’t new to any of you if you been a reader here for a number of months. AND NOW, the LORD is revealing to me more of his plan. You are going to be in shock and awe when I share what I have to say on the development of His plan. It’s happening right now. I will share more on Friday but for today, I want to encourage you to BELIEVE for holy breakthroughs. Our faith is increased when we share testimony. So, I’m sharing a testimony of breakthrough that I believe you can draw upon. My... Read more →

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