Shut in with God: devotions and prayers from #stayathome – Janet DeCaster
Post 1 in this series is found at http://JanetDeCaster.com/shut-in-with-god-devotions-and-prayers-from-stayathome-post-1/
Post 3 – March 23, 2020 (posted 4/7/20) – A clean sweep!
What I share in this post (and in the whole series) is done after much prayerful consideration, along with review by a long-time, trusted, ministry mentor and colleagues. I do so in obedience to a call. Hence, the delay between the writing and the posting date. It’s short and to the point. So…. here goes.
God doesn’t always tell us what we ‘want’ to hear, but if we listen carefully he will tell us what we need to hear. Like many Christians, I’ve been intensively seeking the Lord during one of the most trying times in history: a worldwide pandemic. During a recent time of prayer and fasting, I believe the Holy Spirit showed me that he wanted to bring a “weeping repentance” followed by a “sweeping cleansing” in the American Church. ( the impression in my spirit was “a weeping followed by a sweeping”) As I was reading Hosea this morning, that impression was confirmed in my spirit and deepened. I saw many parallels in the American Church ( during the Covid-19/ coronavirus plague) and Israel during Hosea’s time. Many had fallen away from faith and there was great sin in the land in Hosea’s day in Israel. The same is true in modern day America (including amongst the churched or formerly churched).
The Lesson: The overall message that the Holy Spirit placed in my heart is this: when I (and each of us believers individually); and we (corporately as the Church) turn our hearts back toward our heavenly Father in repentant love; become more fully-devoted to him; pray fervently for the Church (all born again believers) and our nation, and then obey him radically, only then will God “turn our valley of trouble into a door of hope.” (see Hosea 2:15). Friends, Jesus Christ is our only hope.
How about you? Will you join me in this prayer this #holyweek: “Lord make a clean sweep through my heart and life. Help me to have Godly sorrow for my sin. Jesus, forgive me and deliver me from evil as you taught us to pray in the Lord’s prayer! Lord sweep across the Church in America (or insert your nation). Forgive others in the Church in my nation for their sins. Lord Jesus sweep through the hearts of those who are far from you, by your Holy Spirit. Forgive them and mercifully bring them to repentance, followed by salvation. Let my heart become tender to you, my spirit sensitive to your voice and my will obedient to your call. May you then turn this “valley of trouble (the covid-19 pandemic) into a door of hope” (see Hosea 2:15).
As Corrie ten Boom*, the 20th C. Christian author said, “revival starts when we draw a circle around ourselves.” Similarly, Hosea 4:4 (NLT) states, “don’t try to point your finger at someone else and try to pass the blame! My complaint you priests, is with you.” Revival begins with “ME” then flows out to “WE”.
Please PRAY (and SHARE with others who will pray) for that internal sweeping, cleansing that only the Holy Spirit can bring to the human heart!
* ten Boom’s Christian family hid Jews in their home during WWII to spare their lives. For their ‘crimes’ they were sent to concentration camps. While several family members perished there, Corrie survived the torturous imprisonment, and became a best-selling Christian author and speaker on the topic of forgiveness after the war. Her most famous book is The Hiding Place.