What The Lord Said To Me Today
Get Up: Get Back On Your Feet!

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My friend Roger Heim is fond of saying that the reason he never wrote a book is that he would have to disclose all his failures if he talked about his successes in the Lord. Roger is 24 years my senior, and I think he should write such a book. Some people don't like it when we ministers and servants of the Lord talk about ourselves. Some ministers only talk about the mountain tops: they don't discuss their personal valleys. I have grown to appreciate those ministers who open up and reveal their struggles and failings. They have encouraged me to do the same.

I cut my prophetic teeth on seven books by prophet Don Basham. One thing that marks Don's ministry in my memory is that he ministered out of his weaknesses and failings and by what he learned from what he suffered. Never have I encountered such brokeness and willingness to expose human frailty and the ability of Jesus to triumph in spite of that weakness.

Now God has called me to write every day. I, like Don, and Roger, have had many failures, broken dreams, discouragements and the like. God has told me to minister out of the comfort that I have received. Apparently, there are many of you out there who need the benefit of that comfort, because I never receive so much email feedback as when I display my own humanity and failures for all to see, and show how the sun has come out at the end of a long night of darkness.

Yesterday, on Sunday morning, I read an email from a brother who supports my ministry, but he doesn't like it when I talk too much about my own ministry. He was initially bothered by a first line from something I wrote a few days ago, where I said, "I have nothing to say or write, but I am an obedient son."

It just so happens that I sat at my computer and, in fact, had nothing to say or write. I told the Father so. The Lord then spoke to me, and told me to write that, and to also write that I was obedient, so I did it. Isn't it interesting that even solid, mature Christians can be irritated by something that the Lord explicitly told me to do. I wonder how many times that happens to me. I wonder how many times I get upset and irritated when IT IS GOD SPEAKING? My, if this can happen to other, mature brothers, it must happen to me too!

Now, I have to talk some more about my ministry. I must say it to get to the word the Lord spoke to me today.

I awoke this morning early, prepared to drive 200 miles to a ministry board meeting of a ministry I will call WSF. As I awoke, I pondered how many discouraging things have happened to me this year with respect to the WSF ministry: Y2K took out the computer system totally, which I oversee. I'm not aware of another computer system that Y2K took out. I worked about a hundred rather frustrating hours customizing new software to replace the old. Then, I worked 32 hours, without sleep one weekend, after the data recovery people had given me the donor names and addresses in Excel spreadsheet form. I've had backup diskettes go bad on the 200 mile drive to the ministry. I have wanted to quit working for this ministry 5 or 6 times this year. I've had the executive director yelling at me. It has been terrible.

All at once, this morning it dawned on me! Duuuuhhhhhh! I've been under attack. Satan wants me to quit this ministry, and I'm so darned thickheaded and dull that I didn't even realize it. Here I was, putting up with all these problems, and then the ministry wasn't even able to pay me, and I still had not gotten it through my thick head that I was under attack. I told a friend to pray for me, and I left the house to commence my drive.

As I drove the 200 miles north, the weather was terrible: a driving rainstorm. I was heading north on I 95 and traffic was terrible. I reached my turnoff, north of West Palm Beach, and headed west. The rain worsened. I got distracted and missed my turnoff to the northwest, mistakenly continuing westward about 5 miles until I woke up and realized my folly. Now, I could not turn around, because traffic was backed up that whole five miles heading back east. I pulled over, discouraged again, and asked the Lord, in the middle of the rainstorm, what I was supposed to do.

I headed further west to some traffic lights about 5 miles further west, hoping to reach a connector that would head north to the road I needed to be on, but when I got to the last potential connector, I saw a sign which read, "not a through street". Now I was really discouraged. I stopped again, and asked the Lord, what I should do.

It came to me that I was to head the opposite direction, South, from where I needed to go. From there, I could travel to Lake Okeechobee and then travel north along the eastern rim of the lake, to Okeechobee, Sebring and then to my destination. About 1 hour was added to my travel time, but about 5 minutes into my detour, the rain ended and the sun came out, and I was cheered by that. I drove that entire journey on dry road. I thought about the song, LA via Omaha, and laughed.

I thought that perhaps, that was the reason for the detour: perhaps the Lord was keeping me off that dangerous wet road, I reasoned. That is why I was detoured to what had now become an almost 5 hour journey.

I was about 30 minutes from my destination, just east of Sebring. I was listening to secular radio, and a familiar rock song came on. I began to sing along with it. Then, the chorus came along, and the Holy Spirit INVADED my car, covering me with the anointing of God as I sang these very familiar words:

"Get up, get back on your feet, you're the one they can't beat and you know it. Come on, let's see what you've got, just take your best shot and don't blow it." (Words by Dennis De Young) I broke into tears as the Lord covered me with his presence and touched me, encouraging me. It occurred to me that if I had not been delayed 1 hour, I would not have been on the road to hear the Lord speak those words to me through that secular song that some Christians would say was from a devilish source.

Yes, the Lord told me that I had been "fooling myself" to be so discouraged. Jesus is a champion and he lives inside of you and me. As Phil Driscoll once said, there's not the heart of a quitter in me, because Jesus lives in me.

If you've been feeling like quitting; if you have gotten discouraged and are hanging your head, I'll write these words again, that the Lord spoke to me yesterday, accompanying them with an anointing of restoration and power and strength:

"Get up, get back on your feet, you're the one they can't beat and you know it. Come on, let's see what you've got, just take your best shot and don't blow it!" You're a diamond in the rough and Jesus loves you. He's been working on the man: then will come the ministry. It's all gonna be alright!

My Jesus is amazing! He is really something!

Stephen L. Bening
a servant and prophet of our Lord Jesus Christ

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