From Little Children to Sons

By Francis Frangipane

It is time to stand and pray again.  Another hurricane, Jeanne, is heading toward Florida, which means it may also strike the Bahamas en route. Haiti was devastated by this same hurricane, suffering the loss of over a thousand people with many more still missing.  Now Jeanne has looped back toward Florida with increasing intensity.  And Ivan, which apparently had broken up, has now reemerged as a tropical storm causing flooding in Louisiana and Texas. Meanwhile,  off the West African coast, other hurricanes are developing.

Some of these storms are simply natural weather phenomena.  Yet, I am convinced there is a demonic influence as well.  As one who formerly was a ruling archangel before his fall, Satan obviously has power to manipulate weather patterns.  Paul refers to Satan as the "prince of the power of the air" (Eph 2:2).  And in his attack on Job, he caused "a great wind" to come "across the wilderness" and kill Job's children (Job 1:19). We have biblical evidence that the devil can stir up a storm or at least direct it and destructively use it against God's people.

At the same time, for those who are indwelt by Christ, nothing happens that God does not redeem and use. Thus, all Christians, not only those attending our In Christ's Image Training school, should consider this season as "test time."  The Holy Spirit is requiring God's sons and daughters to stand in Christlike prayer, maturity and authority for Florida, the surrounding states and the Caribbean islands.  God is using these challenges to perfect the faith of His elect.

Remember: at all times and in all conflicts, God's will for the elect is always conformity to Christ.   Even as Satan is serious about destroying people's lives, so God is serious about creating mature, Christlike sons and daughters - individuals who are unintimidated by life's storms - who stand in worship, faith and spiritual authority and overcome them.  I believe this maturing of the church, especially in Florida and the surrounding area, is at the core of what God is doing in the midst of this particular battle.  What we learn during this time will be essential in overcoming the greater conflicts that are drawing near. 

War On Many Fronts
Hurricanes are not our only tests.  The election campaigns in the USA and elsewhere represent a deep clash of cultures.  On the right hand are millions of American Christians standing against the sins of abortion, immorality and homosexuality; in opposition are millions of mostly non-Christians who are pro-abortion, who defend gay marriage and who mock Christian morality.  Short of physical violence, culturally, this conflict in America could not be more intense.

Yet, this is not all we face.  There is the looming possibility of a terror attack in the USA.  A recent article states, and I quote:

Senior officials said they "absolutely believe" someone will attempt a terror attack inside the United States within the next four to six weeks. One official described this time "as a very, very serious period."

"I have not seen people in our intelligence communities this nervous since 9/11," one official said, referring to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States that killed almost 3,000 people.

Officials said they believe they "disrupted" at least one major plot by some recent arrests, but fear they may not have "derailed" this plot and possibly two others.

"We will need some luck and the grace of God to prevent this one," one official said, explaining that again they have no specifics as to the exact time and place or clear method. [end quote].
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,133281,00.html

Other reports warn that Islamic terrorists are seeking a level of destruction that exceeds 9/11.  The war in Iraq, whether you believe we should or shouldn't be there, still must be won.  Iraq has become a terrorist magnet.  If we lose Iraq, terrorism will spread out and overtake the world.

The Evil Day
Storms, culture wars, and the threat of terrorism have positioned us with enemies on our right hand and left.  The Bible calls this season "the evil day."  It is time to "take up the full armor of God" and, "having done everything, to stand firm" (Eph 6:13).

Do not fear: our weapons are "divinely powerful" (2 Cor 10:3-4).  Indeed, the Almighty has put His living and powerful word in our mouths, the actual "sword of the [Holy] Spirit" (Eph 6:17).  We have been granted the most powerful reality in the universe: the Spirit-empowered, living word of God. 

It is significant that, synchronized with the timing of these battles, is a forty day season of fasting, prayer and national repentance (http://www.40daysusa.org/home.html).  Hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions, of Christians are engaged in seeking God.

Thus, let us pray with confidence and with mountain moving faith. Let us heed the command of our King who saw these days before there was one of them. Seeing the darkness of our world, He has a command for His overcoming church: "Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD has risen upon you" (see Isaiah 60:1-3). 

Let me repeat the word the Holy Spirit gave us in January about this year:  The constrictions experienced at the end of this age are not death throes, but birth pangs; they are not part of what restricts us, but releases us.

We have been spiritual babies too long.  It is time for little children to become sons