This message was written soon after the American 2020 elections. Though this message is based on the prophecies about Trump, Bible believers can use the counsels given here to respond in the right way to any prophet at any time:
The past few months have been extremely significant for earnest Christians who had been praying for Trump’s reelection. Then came the shocker. Trump was not reelected on November 3 as we had believed, a belief that was reinforced by the daily prophetic pronouncements of many preachers, both wellknown and little known.
Then we presumed that God would reelect Trump through the intervention of the Supreme Court and the Electoral college. When that too didn’t happen and Biden became president on January 20, many, perhaps most praying Christians, including me, became utterly disappointed with the prophets whose predictions failed.
Some of the preachers started apologizing for their failed prophecies, including the famous Sid Roth of It’s Supernatural program. Most others continue prophesying, with new dates for the fulfillment of their prophecies,
It’s now about ten days since a president, who supported the killing of infants in the womb, came to the presidency. Over these past 10 days, as I groaned in agony over God’s refusal to intervene and save the babies, and save America from descending back to its old ways, God began to open my eyes, and I began to see why everything happened as they happened.
Here are the two understandings God gave me:
The first understanding.
The prophets who prophesied wrongly are not wrong about their prophecies, but only about the timing of their prophecies.
Many prophets I listened to did not mention definitely that Trump would become President on such and such a date.
But several famous prophets I listened to did mention specific dates such as Trump becoming president before Christmas, or within a certain number of days from November 3.
Most of the other prophets who had just said that Trump would become president, without specifying a date, now encourage us to believe that Trump will become president sooner or later. Many of them, including the prophetess of God with pink hair, Kat Kerr, tell us with absolute conviction that Trump will be president in or before 2022. Kat Kerr even encouraged her listeners to celebrate Trump’s presidency in advance by eating a piece of cake, which she did in front of the camera. So I too, despite my high diabetes, bought a juicy cake and ate it in pre-celebration of God’s intervention to reinstate the legitimate president. We have about two years to wait until we know if Trump will be president by 2022 as prophesied by Kat Kerr and others.
So the first understanding I received is: The prophets who prophesied wrongly are not necessarily wrong about their prophecies, but only about the timing of their prophecies.
The second understanding I received since the January 20 presidential inauguration is this:
God does not want our relationship with him to be based even an iota on the prophecies of human prophets and preachers.
The prophets and preachers who had so ardently predicted Trump’s victory may be great servants of God, but they are human, and as humans they can make sincere mistakes. Mistakes such as confusing their dreams and imaginations as direct messages from God.
You know how it is, a dream or a strong thought comes to a preacher’s mind, and he or she presumes it has prophetic significance and they go around announcing it to the whole world.
Sometimes what they predict happens, but usually it doesn’t, and the prophet gives some explanation for why it did not happen, and goes on with new prophecies.
Sometimes a prophet’s prediction may happen three times in a row, and then fail miserably the fourth time, and the people who put their trust in the prophet’s words become disappointed with both the prophet and God.
Sometimes the disappointment is so great that the Christian ends, or diminishes, his relationship with God. Because God failed him.
The truth is, God did not tell him anything, it was the prophets who did, and he is angry with God because the prophets were wrong.
So the second understanding I received is: God does not want your relationship to him to be based on anything that a preacher, a prophet, a pastor, a priest, a church, or your parents, tell you.
He wants your relationship with him to be based solely on what he teaches you directly from his Word through the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit is your only true teacher.
Preachers and pastors are like assistant teachers, they can encourage you to go to God’s Word and know about God from his Word directly. But they should never become your main teachers. If you do that, sooner or later, you are going to be bitterly disappointed not only with your spiritual teachers, but with God himself.
So, listen to this brother in Christ. I am no preacher, prophet, pastor, or priest. I am just an assistant Bible teacher, encouraging you to go to God’s Word directly and get your teaching directly from the only spiritual Teacher, the Holy Spirit.
Continue to listen to the preachers you still trust are true prophets of God.
But do not set your heart, that is, put your confidence, on what they say, but keep in your heart what they say. Then, when the time of the prediction comes to pass, judge for yourselves if their prophecies were true or false.
I am keeping in my heart what Kat Kerr and some other prophets are prophesying now. I still do not regret eating that cake. I will either regret or be glad I ate it by the end of 2022. I am still praying earnestly for Trump to be back and save the babies and save America.
God bless Trump, God bless America, and God bless and your family with greater blessings than ever before!
The passionate love that a person had for their spouse when they married can wane within a few years, or after many years, to the point that it becomes an emotionless relationship – unless it is deliberately kept aflame continuously. This is a most vital truth that every person planning to marry, or already married, should keep foremost in their consciousness.
In the beginning months, and sometimes even a few years after the wedding, the husband or wife will go to great lengths to show love to es beloved. But there is an unfailing spiritual law in human relationships that affects every marriage. And this is the law: Showing love for your wife or husband can never be static or motionless. You can never maintain a status quo in your relationship with your beloved. Your love is either growing every day or your love is slackeningevery day. If it is growing, then there is no end to the growth of this love, and the words in 1 Corinthians 13:8 proves eternally true: ‘love never fails (or ‘ends’ in some other translations).
If your love is slackening, then there is a gradual, or a galloping, end to your relationship with your wife or husband. Love that is not daily growing will daily slow down to the point that it will become motionless with perpetual inertia. When that point is reached, either of two actions happens. Divorce, or a lifelong acceptance of going through the motions of living, devoid of any feelings. This can happen a few months after the wedding, or a few decades after the initial years of nuptial bliss. How many couples I know of personally who have permanently severed their hearts from each other after 25 or more years of cleaving together as one flesh!
What is the reason that love for a spouse wanes, though at one time that very love was so intense and true the person would be willing to give up es life for es beloved without a moment’s hesitation?
Why did Michal’s love for David wane to the point that she actually despised him in her heart, that is, in the deepest recesses of her consciousness? And why did David, a man after God’s own heart, end his love for his wife to the point he never again slept with her for the rest of his life? 2 Sam 6:16-23 Why is that loving couples, who have faithfully brought up fine kids, and have beautiful grandkids, decide to call it quits in their long relationship, and seek other life partners in their senior years?
The answer is that husbands and wives – but mostly husbands – confuse true love with feelings of affection.
Please keep this counsel deep in your heart, child of God, even if you are sure your relationship with your spouse has a very secure foundation. Unless you understand and apply the following basic truth in all your dealings with your life partner, the day will surely come – as surely as there exists a universal Destroyer of marriages – that you will find that the passionate true love you had for your wife or husband has greatly diminished in its feelings, and with that diminution come one by one all the deadly effects of a stagnant relationship. And this is the truth:
True love that never fails, that never ends, that always keeps growing forever and ever, is based not on your feelings for the one you love, but is based on your will apart from your feelings.
Now let me explain that plainly.
There are two kinds of initial love. One is instinctive love. That’s the love that a mother or a father has for es child. It is a causelesslove. The child did nothing to earn or win their parents’ love. Causeless love is also known as unconditional love. That’s the love our Father in heaven has for each of us. It is the love that made our Savior die for our sins even before we knew him. He loves us solely for the reason he created us in his image and likeness, just as we fall in love with our just-born baby solely because that baby came from our own body. Instinctive love is the second most powerful force in the universe. But it is not the love that never ends or fails. The most powerful instinctive love on earth today is mother’s love. But God says even that love has a limit, that awesome love can end if given the extreme circumstances.
‘Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget’ Is 49:15
The word ‘may’ is not in the original Hebrew. Young’s Literal Translation says ‘Yea, these forget’.
‘Surely’, given the circumstances, a mother will forget the child that came from her womb, if all she has is just instinctive love for him or her. And that is because even unconditional instinctive love is ultimately conditional on the responses of the one loved instinctively. Unconditional love becomes conditional after a certain point, and when the conditions for that love cease, unconditional love also ceases.
The other kind of initial love is the love that a man has for a woman he falls in love with, and vice versa. In this category of love also is the love of a close friend or of a brother or sister. This love can also be very deep initially, even to the extent the person will be ready to give up es life to save the one e loves – es wife or husband, or sibling, or friend. See Romans 5:7. But, as in the case of maternal love, all such initial true love ends when the factors for such love fail.
Now let’s take the relationship of a couple deeply in love. Over many years of living together, the husband or wife begins to see many negative qualities in the one e loves, which e did not see in the initial years of living together. Arguments, quarrels, misunderstandings, offenses, and perhaps ultimately even betrayal, ensue as the spouse displays more and more of es negative qualities. After a few years, or decades, one spouse has had enough, and quits struggling to live with the unbearable flaws of the other. There is no more feeling of love remaining for the one who has consistently shown only an increasing lack of lovable qualities. In modern times, the relationship formally ends with a divorce. In earlier ages, and even today in the more conservative cultures, the continuing rift of hearts between the couple does not often physically rift the couple apart; instead, they continue to stay under the same roof. But their natural conjugal feeling for each other is replaced with a resigned attitude of suppressed bitterness that simmers in their heart for the rest of their lives.
My family knew a man and his wife in our native community many years ago. The man and his wife were active members of their church and respected in society. But everyone knew that the man and his wife never spoke a single word to each other ever since something happened between them in their earlier years. They lived together under one roof, but never spoke a syllable to each other for several decades. They both lived to ripe old age and are now dead. How they managed to do that is still a mystery to me. I mean the technicalities of living together without one word of communication at any time. But what is not a mystery is how such extreme living became possible. It is simply another case of a relationship that was based on feelings, and when the feelings evaporated the relationship dried up.
When you put that ring on your beloved’s finger on the blissful day of your union, or, as in my country, tied the string around your bride’s slender neck, or had your glowing groom tie it around your quivering neck, that is a symbol of an unconditional fidelity to each other till death parts you. When a groom or bride answers ‘I do’ to the following question,
‘Do you take (name) for your lawful wife;husband, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do you part?’
they absolutely mean it with all their heart. But years later, it slowly becomes evident that the ‘I do’ actually meant,
‘I do promise to take you as my lawful wife:husband, to have and hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part, as long as you don’t act and speak in a manner that will affect my feelings for you.’
So how can you ensure a drying up of your love will never occur in your relationship with your spouse? By ensuring that your love for your wife or husband is not based on feelings. Enjoy the feelings and rejoice over them as long as the feelings come naturally. When the feelings wane, as surely as they will when your spouse begins to reveal his or her hitherto suppressed flaws, replace the feelings with your will of commitment.
If you have been recently married, or married for many years, it is most vital for the lifelong safety of your marriage that you transform your attitude toward your spouse from this day on with the help of God. Renew your old conjugal vows in your mind, and add the following lifelong pledge to yourself and to God:
‘I will love my wife (husband) unconditionally from this day forth, and when I say unconditionally, I mean absolutely unconditionally. If a time ever comes that I cannot find any more happiness in my wife (husband), I will continue to love her (him) even in the absence of any feelings of happiness. Whether she (he) pleases me or not, I will care for her (him) and cherish her (him), just as I would care for and cherish a part of my own body that is giving me pain. When my feelings have gone for her (him), I will continue to love her (him) by a deliberate act of my will in opposition to my natural feelings. So, help me to do this, Lord!’
That’s a pledge that should be foremost in your mind constantly – even in the days of your great happiness with your spouse. It is the surest insurance for the safety of your marriage when the days of trouble come, when God may allow the devil to test you through severe trials in your marriage.
Now what’s the benefit of loving a spouse who is no longer giving you any happiness? Why take the great and constant pain of continuing to live with em when you could easily have less unhappiness living apart or find happiness again with a new spouse?
Because that’s the way our God loves you and me. Because his love never fails even when we stop loving him. And our God wants us to love our spouse just as he loves us.
To the unhappy husband he says:
‘For husbands, this means love your wives, JUST AS Christ loved the church…In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. As you love her, you ultimately are loving part of yourself (remember, you are one flesh). No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church.’ Eph 5:25-29 NLT, VOICE. Emphasis mine
‘Husbands, love your wives [be affectionate and sympathetic with them] and do not be harsh or bitter or resentful toward them.’ Col 3:19 AMP
To the unhappy wife he says:
‘Wives, it should be no different with your husbands. Submit to them as you do to the Lord, for God has given husbands a sacred duty to lead as the Anointed leads the church and serves as the head. (The church is His body; He is her Savior.) So wives should submit to their husbands, respectfully, in all things, JUST AS the church yields to the Anointed One. Eph 5:22-24 VOICE
And to both the Lord urges:
‘However, let each man of you [without exception] love his wife as [being in a sense] his very own self; and let the wife see that she respects and reverences her husband that she notices him, regards him, honors him, prefers him, venerates, and esteems him; and that she defers to him, praises him, and loves and admires him exceedingly. Eph 5:33 AMP
And what is the final outcome of a husband loving his wife as his own body, of his not giving in to feelings of bitterness against her [in spite of her seemingly being an incorrigible nag], and of a wife submitting to her husband in everything just as she submits to Christ, of her esteeming him and admiring him exceedingly [in spite of his seemingly obnoxious qualities]?
When you continue to love with your will your wife or husband who continues to hurt you, God’s universal spiritual law guarantees an ultimate result. The hurting person will eventually stop hurting. And a transformation begins to happen in the loveless heart and mind of the spouse as she or he continues to receive your love. All the spots, wrinkles, and blemishes of your faulty spouse begin to clear away one by one. And as your spouse continues to blossom under your unceasing and unconditional love, she or he will begin to do things to you that you could have never imagined even in the wildest fantasy of your dreams on your wedding day or in the initial blissful days of your marriage. And soon you will have a shining spouse standing before you – clean, holy and without a single fault in any area of her or his life.
‘He gave up his life for her to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word. He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and WITHOUT FAULT. IN THE SAME WAY, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies.’ Eph 5:25-29 NLT. Emphasis mine
When you forsake your feelings for your wife or husband and continue to love em, the very same feelings you sacrificed are sooner or later going to come back to you in hundredfold measure, brimful and overflowing. This is an absolute promise from the Creator who brought man and woman together in marriage.
‘Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s, who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time’ Mark 10:29-30
‘Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full – pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap.’ Luke 6:38 NLT
The more feelings you sacrifice so you can willfully continue to love your unlovable spouse, the more will be the love and the feelings of happiness you will eventually receive from your spouse. This is the greatest law of relationship.
Foolish, very foolish indeed is the man or woman, who after some years of enduring unhappiness with his wife or her husband gives up and goes their separate way to seek the happiness and love that eluded them in their first marriage. Whom would you personally choose to marry: A wonderful wife or husband who deserves a heavenly score of 10 points out of a maximum 100 in the measure of lifelong happiness she or he gives you, OR a wife or husband who, after some initial years of not deserving even one point in her or his qualities as a wife or husband, will give you happiness and love that both your heart and heaven will give an unbelievable score of 100 out of 100?
‘I tell you, her sins – and they are many – have been forgiven, so she has shown me much love. But a person who is forgiven little shows only little love.’ Luke 7:47
‘She was forgiven many, many sins, and so she is very, very grateful. If the forgiveness is minimal, the gratitude is minimal.’ MSG
Before I conclude this message, I urge you to listen to this wonderful song on YouTube – the most influential I have heard in Christian music – by Don Francisco. As you listen, please ponder the words in the lyrics given below.
So you say you can’t take it, the price is too high
The feelings have gone it seems the river’s run dry
You could never imagine it could turn out so rough
You given, given, given, still it’s never enough
Your emotions have vanished that once held the thrill
You wonder if love could be alive in you still
But that ring on your finger, was put there to say
You’ll never forget the words you promised that day
Jesus didn’t die for you because it was fun
He hung there for love because it had to be done
And despite of the anguish, his word was fulfilled
Love is not a feeling it’s an act of your will
Love is not a feeling it’s an act of your will
Now I wouldn’t try to tell you that it’s easy to stand
When Satan’s throwing everything that’s at his command
But Jesus is faithful, his promise is true
And whatever he asks he gives the power to do
Jesus didn’t die for you because it was fun
He hung there for love because it had to be done
And despite of the anguish, his word was fulfilled
Love is not a feeling it’s an act of your will
Love is not a feeling it’s an act of your will
For 25 years, until my children outgrew their father’s quality time around them, I assumed that paternal closeness was indeed the greatest gift I could bestow upon them, apart from unconditional love, which I am not discussing here at all, and which I do not deem as a gift to be discovered and given; it is obvious that we parents do not have to strive to have unconditional love for our offspring – it’s an instinctive thing. As for values and character development, these are naturally imbibed from the parents when the greatest gift is given to the children. What has to be learned by parents with growing children is a most precious understanding that has to be gifted to them by wizened and oftentimes remorseful older folks, for rarely can a young couple acquire such parenting perspective on their own until it is too late and the nest is already empty.
It is my hope that you as an earnest parent are privileged to still have your little kids whizzing past you, squeaking in delight on imaginary chases and causing the usual disquietude to your hour of relaxation after a hectic day’s work. Perhaps you are on a continual quest to find the elusive golden keys to bringing up your kids with a trifle less commotion, safely, wisely and above all, successfully – which is probably why you are reading this message. I have yet to see a 70-year-old father reading an article on parenting or a grandma earnestly referring Dr. Spock’s revered counsels.
The following illustrative story is about a father and a mother who gave the greatest gift to their children:
16-year-old Raju was one of the several undernourished children that the love union of his parents inadvertently brought forth into an impoverished community. Manual laborers by profession, Raju’s parents’ greatest goal on waking up each morning was to be able to feed their five children at least two meals that day. The struggle for daily sustenance was eased a bit when Raju was old enough to help his parents in their quarrying work.
Quarrying, as it’s done in underdeveloped lands, is more than just pickaxing away chunks off the solid rock face. It literally involves a dynamite of a risk. A hole about a foot deep is made on the rock face, raw gunpowder is packed into it, and one end of a gunpowder-laced cord inserted into the hole. The other end, a couple of meters away, is set sparkling with the glowing end of a beedi (the local cigarillo), upon which act the igniter shouts, ‘vediyehhhhhhh!’ (‘explosion coming!’), raising and extending his pitch on the final syllable. Anyone thereabouts then has around seven to ten seconds to duck for cover against the meteor of huge boulders descending on the rock face. Raju wasn’t nimble enough on one of those occasions.
As he lay in the government hospital, one arm almost severed and hanging on a tendon and his body a bloody mess of flesh, his father and mother rushed to his bedside. There wasn’t the usual laborers’ wail of distress from the parents on sighting their crumbled up child.
Instead, the father quietly took hold of his son’s hand of the remaining arm, while the mother seated herself at the foot of the bed, and began to gently stroke her son’s feet. This they continued to do until, after the usual long delay of public servants in such places, a surgeon was finally available to amputate the boy’s arm.
As he was trolleyed into the operation theater, the father kept holding his son’s hand, all the while showering him that reassuring look he had been silently effusing since he arrived at his son’s bedside. After the operation, and through the days of recuperation, the father’s and the mother’s mode of reaction to their son’s tragedy remained unchanged and unabated. The father held his son’s hand as often as he stood by his bedside, and the mother kept stroking her child’s feet as often as she sat on the edge of his bed, until the day they were able to limp him back home.
I have gone to some descriptive length in narrating this incident, but have done so with the intention of conveying an experience for which I still couldn’t figure a one-word expression. The Greek language, it seems, has a word that comes close to it. It’s usually spelled ‘agape’ (pronounced ‘ah-gah-pey’) in English. When translating ancient Greek manuscripts containing this word into the English language, the translators, for want of a better expression, settled for the incomplete sense in the word ‘love’, while acknowledging that it doesn’t convey the full intent of the Greek terminology. The closest I could manage in defining this gift is by the compounded term:
The greatest gift you can give your child is the abiding assurance deep within your child’s psyche of your undistractible attention and your unfailing presence in absolutely any situation in which your child might find himself.
Perhaps the shorter phrase ‘continuous lifelong bonding’ might suffice for the present purpose. It’s a bonding that never loses a shade of its warmth when a child is weaned off his mother’s breast milk. It’s a bonding that never loses its intimacy when a child grows too big to be kissed in front of his friends. And this bonding abides constant without a trace of diminution whether the child has done something terribly wrong or is suffering the deserved consequences of deliberate delinquency.
This was the gift that Raju could perceive his parents had been lavishing on him all along. Raju’s parents never had read a book on childrearing. Yet they were gifted with the most important truth in raising a child – something which eludes the expressive capability of many a PhD in child sychology. This is a gift all parents naturally have, but the tragedy is that their children don’t always discern it, because the parents do not realize they aren’t expressing it. On the contrary, many children feel a neglect of them by parents – a root cause for the growing number of runaway teenagers each year in the materially developed, but emotionally deprived, countries. It’s a basic cause for the growing number of children turning to drugs for a substitute assurance or for a temporary obliteration of the gnawing awareness within them of being deprived of their greatest emotional need – of knowing with absolute certainty that there are people who will love them and care for them no matter what.
As modern civilization keeps rushing forward to its ominous destination at a human-relations warping pace, and as men and women get caught in the vortex of career advancement or job survival, the biggest sacrifice that parents make on the altar of family sustenance is their continuous bonding with their children. And being subconsciously aware of something amiss in their relationship with their offspring, they come up with measured amounts of ‘quality time’ at predetermined hours of the day, or they seek to compensate for the shortage of this greatest of gifts with excessive material demonstrations of affection and profuse verbal assurances. But outward effusions of affection can never be a substitute for continuous internal bonding.
In my many years as a teacher, I observed children as young as three and a half years old being virtually abandoned by their parents to the care of strangers in boarding schools in their native country, while they returned to the Gulf or to the US so they could better lay up provisions for the future of these very children they left behind. Today, I see or hear of some of these same children, now grown up and parents themselves. The lack of bonding did cause severe sychological disorders in a very few of these former school boarders. But the vast majority did not turn out to be violence-prone adults or introverts or social misfits. On the contrary, they proved to be reliable, hardy and successful citizens.
But I discerned one vital ingredient that was missing in all of them: Their concept of parenting, their attitude towards their now old parents, their relationship with their spouses, and with people in general, were not as deep as those of the people that had a history of unbroken bonding with their parents. Their relationships initially tend to be shallow or problematic, and only their constant and earnest efforts in overcoming mentalities and attitudes formed in childhood could offset their defective bonding with their parents. Yet, I can’t remember any case where the negative effects of an improperly bonded relationship in childhood days were completely offset by personal efforts to correct a wounded subconscious. The effects, it seems, are lifetime, unless a great miracle occurs in the heart of the grownup child whose parents couldn’t give them the ‘agape’ kind of bonding. And miracles are rare phenomena in an increasingly Godless world, aren’t they?
I also found that the aged parents in the retirement homes who were the most lonely and the least visited by their children are those very parents who had deprived their children of the greatest gift in their tender years.
Bonding is impossible without the actual presence of the parents. But it is not the kind of presence so demanded by quality time advocates. A parent can spend all the quality time with their child and still find 10 or 15 years later that they have lost forever something of incalculable preciousness in the hearts of their offsprings. The ‘I-am-always-there-for-you-no-matter-what’ is a gift given through the spontaneous vibes of the heart more than through the deliberate verbal demonstrations of affection and calculated allocations of time.
This inviolable bonding between parents and children is the most precious legacy that one generation can pass on to the next. The inadequately bonded child, for all the verbal assurances and quality time given to him by his concerned parents, is not likely to bond adequately with his own offspring, and thus passes on a plague of shallow family relations.
The greatest of gifts that parents can give their child is also the greatest gift that a husband can render his wife…that which shoots a wave of thrill down the spine of a woman every time she unexpectedly sights her man. It is also the gift that binds two young children with a friendship that remains intact as ever even after a separation of several decades.
As I write this, I remember that I promised my boyhood chum I will be meeting him two days from now in his hometown about 100 kilometers from my place. It was only a few days ago that I heard his voice on the phone, after having lost track of him for 37 years. The last time I saw him was when we were both discovering, somewhat mischievously, the magic of the first year of our teen lives, and I just can’t wait to see how he looks now and to give him a bear hug…