Faith Believing

It seems quite a few icons have passed into eternity recently. At least some we felt like we knew, if even at a distance. We could see their famous lives play out, beautifully at times. 

The one I’m most inspired by is Pastor Jack Hayford. He was a father figure to me from afar. I began listening to his radio broadcasts in 1979 on my drivetime to work. I was captured by the truths he spoke and impressed by the conviction with which he spoke them. He was someone I wanted to know better. Someone from whom I wanted to hear more. 

And then there was Franco Harris and Lisa Marie Presley. I didn’t know either of them personally, but I did serve Mr. Harris once when I worked as a flight attendant decades ago. I remember him as strong, kind and well-mannered. Ms. Presley, I had never met but I admired her beauty, her voice and her musical legacy. I prayed for her and her family.

I fought sadness in my heart when these people passed. It’s times like this, when our world changes as we know it, that I’m reminded we serve a faithful God. He is gracious beyond what we can comprehend, rich in mercy and reaches people and places we cannot. He is our only hope.

Holy Spirit always leads me when I pass through grief, encouraging my heart along the way. He often reveals to me when a loved one—or even a public figure—needs prayer or is about to pass into eternity. But this was not the case with these three people.

However, a few years back, when a relative was about to pass, Holy Spirit showed me a vision of their face late one night. I didn’t know exactly what was wrong. It just felt urgent. So, I immediately began to pray. 

When this person passed, I wondered if they knew Jesus; because I never knew their testimony. I never saw them attend church. So, in my quest for peace, I sought an answer from God. 

Holy Spirit showed me a vision of a simple, narrow cross lying flat on the ground. Then, in an instant, the cross stood up straight. My heart felt overwhelmed with gratitude, because I understood that God raised up a cross for my beloved relative. 

In time, Holy Spirit confirmed this to me with His Word in Ephesians 2:6 AMP, which says, “And He raised us up together with Him [when we believed], and seated us with Him in the heavenly places, [because we are] in Christ Jesus.”

I was reminded that all that is required of us to enter into Heaven with God is our belief by faith in His grace through Messiah Jesus. 

We don’t often know what people hold in their hearts or say in their final moments. We don’t often hear their most intimate prayers or their deepest cries for help. But we can know God who does. And He can settle our souls with one revelation.

Lately, a few have come to me for private prayer in their profound losses. They’ve sought God to help their hearts along. Sometimes, He works over time. Sometimes, He works in a moment. But through it all, we can know that our best place with Him is up and forward. 

God has more life ahead for His grieving ones and the saints that have gone before us. Thankfully, He offers us an invitation to keep looking up, not behind. Yes, we have cherished memories. But divine restoration awaits us. First, in our hearts with Him. Then with others up ahead. This gives us hope.

We don’t have to get trapped in pain. We can grieve through someone’s passing and not camp there too long. 

When I consider Lisa Marie Presley, I remember myself, having lost a loved one at an early age and not knowing how to process through it God’s way.

I didn’t experience peace in this regard until years later, when I came to know God more and finally decided to trust Him enough to give Him all the pain and loss. Only then, did God begin to heal my heart. 

It has been decades since then, and I can honestly say that I can remember the loss but the pain has no effect now. It doesn’t hold me back from being and doing what God has for me in my life. 

He is the only One who can heal a soul this well. There is no honor in the unwillingness to release painful loss to the One who gives and takes away. We can choose to see and live as He wills—in the scope of eternity with so much more around us and forward. In this place of hope, it can be made well with our souls. 

So, pray with me if you will . . . 

Dear Lord, 

Thank You for Your sacrifice to heal my heart. Thank You for Your promise of restoration. I willingly give You all the grief of my loss. I willingly lay, at the foot of the cross, my way of coping. I willingly trust You with my loved ones who have gone before me. I ask You to remove all the pain from my heart and make it whole again. 

I realize that You, Lord, are full of compassion and no one has suffered more than Your Son. So, please help me to look up to You and receive Your abundant life for me under Your great cloud of witnesses, who are alive with You (He 12:1). 

In Jesus’ Mighty Name, 


This devo was graciously re-posted by the Salem Web Network, which includes

Faith Believing

This Thursday, May 13, 2021, marks Ascension Day—the fortieth day from Jesus’ resurrection, when He ascended to Heaven to be seated at the right hand of our Heavenly Father (Lk 22:69). 

Although many scriptures describe what this means for us, my favorite illustration is found in Isaiah 25:6-12 of the TPT version, which is subtitled “The Rich Feast of the Lord.” It says: 

The Lord Yahweh, Commander of Angel Armies, will host a rich feast on this mountain for all peoples—a feast with plenty of meat and well-aged wine, with an abundance of food and the finest of wine. And on this mountain, he will destroy the shroud wrapped around all the people, the veil spread over all nations. It is the gloom of death! He will swallow it up in victory forever! And God, Lord Yahweh, will wipe away every tear from every face. He will remove every trace of disgrace that his people have suffered throughout the world, for the Lord Yahweh has promised it! In that day they will say, ‘Behold! This is our God! We’ve waited for him, and he saved us! This one, the Lord Yahweh—he is worth the wait! We will keep shouting with joy as we find our bliss in his salvation-kiss!’

The mighty, gracious hand of the Lord Yahweh will rest upon this mountain, but the Moabites will be trampled under his feet as straw gets trampled into the manure. They will stretch out their arms in it like a swimmer stretches out his arms to swim, yet God will bring down their pride, and they will thrash and sink despite their struggle. He will tear down the high walls of Moab’s fortresses and flatten them into the dust.

So, friends, in these verses, we see what is available to us as we live an ascended life with Jesus, which is in the true high place, where our enemies become our footstool and we rise above pain to a protective place, full of provision. Believing this, we can apprehend it in our lives on earth, as our eyes are fixed on Him, no matter what. 

It’s the abundant life of God revealed to us in John 10:10 above the enemy’s false parallel to kill, steal and destroy.

It’s the goodness of God revealed in Philippians 4:19 AMPC, which says, “And my God will liberally supply (fill to the full) your every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”

It’s where we can “be supernaturally infused with strength through” our “life-union with the Lord Jesus,” according to Ephesians 6:10 TPT. Where we can “stand victorious with the force of his explosive power flowing in and through” us.  

It’s the place of true power and authority, where we can remain as God releases judgment on unrepentant evildoers—both on the person and on the spirit behind the person, according to Isaiah 24:21 TPT.

This begs the question: Since we determine where we are seated—the mountaintop or the pit—by our behavior, as seen through grace, do we have the active faith that is required to gain and sustain rich mountaintop abundance? 

The answer is that we do if we are patiently obedient—if we continue to choose to be faithful to God’s instructions—all the way through the tribulation of the climb to completion.

Our Lord as salvation will protect us inwardly and outwardly along the way (Is 26:1).

Isaiah 26:2-3 describe this journey of victory by saying, “Open the gates and let a righteous, faith-filled people enter in. Perfect, absolute peace surrounds those whose imaginations are consumed with you; they confidently trust in you.”

We can also find encouragement in 1 Corinthians 15:57-58 NIV, which say, “But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”

So, our living faith (with works) pleases God and brings honor to Him. Isaiah 1:17 TPT reminds us to “Learn what it means to do what is good by seeking righteousness and justice! Rescue the oppressed. Uphold the rights of the fatherless and defend the widow’s cause.”

Our behavior—meaning our faithful obedience and works—sets the standard and expectation by which we will be judged by God (Ro 2:6, 9, 16). So, let’s not take the “riches of his extraordinary kindness…for granted” but choose His higher ways above our limited ways.

Let’s keep believing for God’s best and behave accordingly. It’s easier when we remain in worship to Him alone—in His Word, in prayer and in praise. It’s easier when we embrace His vision as our own.

So, pray with me if you will…

Dear Lord, 

Thank You for Your very best for me. Help me to receive it by Your grace. Don’t let me stray from your clear path of victory. Help me. Keep me on track. Help me be a doer of Your Word—all the way to and on top of the mountain (Ro 2:13, Ps 72:3). Open my eyes to see more of Your goodness and Your ways. Help me to be faithful to You, Lord, above all else. You alone are my King.

In Jesus’ Mighty Name.


This video-devo was graciously re-posted by the Salem Web Network, which includes