“Texas church service stabbing leaves at least one dead; suspect in custody”
Every time I see the above headline my heart is both heavy and hopeful. Heavy for the family of the dear man whose life on earth ended. Hopeful for what I feel God is getting ready to do.
It’s hard to believe that two weeks ago I was standing in the very room where these attacks occurred. As I worshipped and prayed with these precious brothers and sisters in the Lord, there is no way I could have ever imagined that a week and a half later a vicious assault by a tormented man would take the life of one of the band members and leave one of the pastors hospitalized with multiple stab wounds.
Romans 8:28 reminds us that “…all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”
The enemy brought evil, but God’s love will prevail! The members of this church have a heart for the lost, the wounded, and the broken. They have a heart for the body of Christ. They have a heart for Corpus Christi. That is why they have been fasting and praying for over a month.
Yesterday morning, when a friend called me and told me about the attacks, my first reaction was disbelief. My second was to worship. Through the instability of a tormented soul, the enemy tried to take this church down, but in knowing these amazing brothers and sisters in Christ and in knowing the heart of my awesome God, I believe they will rise up.
As I prayed and worshipped, I kept hearing the phrase, “bricks without straw”. I immediately thought about Moses.
Before the Israelite slaves obtained their freedom, their circumstances became worse, not better. They were told that they had to make the same quota of bricks without using the straw that helped to hold the bricks together.
Instead of crying out for freedom, the people cried for Moses to leave them alone. They would rather stay in slavery than suffer while awaiting victory.
When trauma and tragedy shake our worlds, we must choose whether we will let our circumstances take us down or cause us to rise up.
Rising doesn’t mean that we don’t grieve.
Rising doesn’t mean that we don’t hurt for the hurting.
Rising doesn’t mean that we don’t use wisdom.
Rising doesn’t mean that we don’t pursue justice.
Rising means that in the midst of the pain we don’t let go of our purpose.
The enemy wants to derail us. God wants to propel us.
I just read another article stating that Pastor Abraham has forgiven the attacker and the church will meet this Sunday as usual.
When tragedy strikes our lives the enemy tries to take us down, shut us down, and shut us up. He wants us to focus on what has been taken from us (no more straw for making our bricks) instead of on focusing on what God is getting ready to do in us and through us. The slaves wanted an easier load, but God wanted freedom for all. If they had known that God’s plan would release them from making bricks, they would have not seen the missing straw as being a problem.
When Pharaoh told them that they had to make bricks without straw, he had given them an impossible task. Little did he or the slaves know, that God was going to do the impossible and remove both Pharaoh and the task.
I don’t know what you are facing today, but God does. If you have been shaken by what has been taken from you, don’t let the enemy take you down, shut you down, or shut you up. Know that God loves you. Instead of taking on fear, guilt, condemnation, or bitterness, Take hold of Jesus’ hand and trust His heart –then rise up and take hold of the victory He is preparing for you!
Please keep the pastors of Kingdom Acts Ministries (Harvest Tabernacle Church) , their church members, and the family and friends of the wounded and deceased in your prayers. Pray also for the healing and deliverance of the attacker.
May you be abundantly blessed!
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