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February 2006
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What's Missing in the Church?

Have you ever eaten a donut hole?  Some may say that a donut hole is invisible.  Others would say, "Sure, you can buy a whole bag of them for $2.00 down at the corner super market."  However, the donut itself has a punched out center, leaving nothing there to eat.  There is substance surrounding the donut hole, but there are zero calories being consumed by only eating the center.  Corinne allows me to eat all of the invisible donut holes I can eat!

For the past several days I a have been observing a vision of the American Church.  In this vision the Church looks like a giant donut.  It has been fried to a light, golden brown, and looks very appealing.  There is a lot of substance to it, but there is a huge hole in the center of it all.  Something is missing!

Over the past years, I have observed many new things come and go in the Church.  Some have only been fads, others have contained substance, becoming a blessing to the Church. For starters I can recall; the new apostolic movement, the River, Renewal, the prophetic movement, intercessors, healing rooms and healing  ministries, servant evangelism, houses of prayer, harp and bowl worship, spiritual mapping, spiritual warfare, conferences and more conferences, dream interpretation, the house church movement, cell groups, open church, seeker sensitive churches, the song of the Lord, relaxed dress codes, flagging, the arts, etc., etc., etc.  This list could continue forever!  Much of this has been very positive, and has filled a need, making the donut attractive and good tasting.  Yet there is a very large hole in the middle of it all!

Psalm 85: 6 says, "Won't you revive us again, so your people can rejoice in you?" 

The missing hole is REVIVAL!  To be honest, being a revivalist at heart has caused me to long for true revival more than ever before.  Yes, I enjoy and partake in much of the list above.  I like eating the donut!  I love the Church!  I love God's people!  But I am sensing strongly that we are in a day that even our conferences on revival have become just one more program of the Church.  I long to see the day when the hole is filled.  I am hungry and thirsty for the "Real Deal!" 

Revival is for the Church.  Once the Sleeping Giant is awakened, God will send His Harvest.  I am hearing God's alarm clock beginning to ring! 

Psalm 85, 12, "Yes, the Lord pours down his blessings.  Our land will yield its bountiful harvest"  Let's seek the Lord, Let's seek the Donut Hole!  Please remember the net result.... Acts 8:8, "So there was great joy in that city."  This is not just good meetings, not people attending conferences, this was a transformation that took place within Samaria because the Church of that day and in that location was a complete Donut.... no holes visible!

To all of this I can only add, "More Lord!"

Blessings ~ Larry

My webpage: www.larrysilverman.com


By His Stripes... Corinne Healed of Cancer

Isaiah 53: 5 (NLT), "But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins.  He was beaten so we could be whole.  He was whipped so we could be healed."

James 5: 14, 15 (NLT), "Are any of you sick?  You should call for the elders of the church to come and pray over you, anointing you with oil in the name of the Lord.  Such a prayer offered in faith will heal the sick, and the Lord will make you well."

Normally I try to get at least one new blog published per week.  Sometimes this is an effort as there is much time and work involved in getting these done.  However, once again this morning, I awoke at 4:00 a.m.  I spent some time in prayer over a few prayer requests that I recalled from yesterday's email, and in so doing began to pray harder for more healing to be released upon the Body of Christ.  During this time the Lord reminded me of Corinne's testimony of healing and I felt the urge to share this with you, as it may help increase your faith.

In 1976 Corinne and I were very new Christians and were in the process of learning of God's healing power.  Corinne, age 27 at the time, felt to schedule a long postponed physical with her doctor and after a few tests were done, suspicious cells were found in her body.  More tests were completed and late on a Friday afternoon, we got the phone call -CANCER!  We were young in the Lord, I was a Bible College student, seeking to fulfill the call of God.  We had 2 young sons, ages 7 and 9, and our baby girl was 1.  We did not have insurance and we were living by faith on a very low income.  The "C Word" really brought a hard, stunning blow to our life of faith. "This can't be happening to us!"

We felt not to share any of this information with anyone right away, as we just needed to process some of it ourselves.  We did try to call our pastor, TW French of Faith Temple Christian Center, Holland, MI, but we were unable to reach him, so we decided to fill him in after church Sunday morning.  Sunday came and we were still in a state of shock.  We entered into worship that day, maybe even more intensely than usual.  About mid-way through Pastor French's sermon, he stopped preaching and said, "I really feel that there is someone here that just informed that they have cancer, and if they will for prayer we'll have the Elders anoint them with oil and we'll watch God heal them!" 

Wow!  The congregation that morning was several hundred strong.  Corinne looked at me and I at her, and of course no else in the entire building was moving an inch.  The word was for her!  No one knew of the cancer, except for God!  As we anointed Corinne, prayed over her, Pastor French prayed against all fear.  He said, "The Lord is saying that the fear of cancer is actually worse than the cancer itself."  We walked back to our seats totally spent.  We had been in the presence of God and we just knew for certain that God had healed Corinne as God had given her a gift of faith.

The next week Corinne had to consult with a surgeon and was told that she needed an operation to have the cancer removed.  At that time she declined the treatment and said that the Lord had healed her.  The doctor told her that she needed to be continually checked, and Corinne did agree to regular tests, every two weeks, and to our surprise the tests kept coming back positive.  Our family was quite upset.  They did not have the knowledge of the Bible in the area of healing, so we faced a lot of heated discussions over this..."trusting God business!"

By this time a little over two months had passed.  They were very long months, they seemed like an eternity, the cancer was still present.  One morning Corinne was alone with God, thinking of the fact that the cancer was still present, and the Lord began to show her issues of unforgiveness that she had with her father.  Corinne never had been physically abused, but she was very emotionally abused.  The Lord told her that she needed to forgive her dad.   During  this time of prayer, to the best of her ability she did forgive her dad.  It was then that she had complete peace come over her about the cancer.  Something had changed!

It did not come as a surprise that her next scheduled test came back negative!  The doctor was dumb founded.  He said, "It's not gone, we just can't find it today."  Two weeks later there was still no sign of the cancer.  The doctor then said, "We just can't find it, but it will be back!"  (and this was a Christian doctor!)  For three months Corinne went back to the doctor every other week.  Soon the tests were done monthly for another six months, then every three months for another year, and yearly ever since.  The cancer that the doctor said would be back, that Corinne would see it again within five years, has never come her way again!  For thirty years Corinne has been totally free from cancer!

I trust that this testimony will help someone today.  If you are facing a physical affliction, turn to Jesus.  If you have sought His provision of healing for your life, and it has not been manifested yet, let me encourage you... Do not give up! It seems like many of God's Children today are fighting strong physical attacks.  I want to declare over you today the truth of God's word..... Hebrews 13:8, "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever!

God loves you today as much as He loves Corinne!  His provision for you today is the same as it was for her thirty years ago. 

One last thing.  If you or someone you know is needing healing for cancer, please let us all know so that Corinne and I and any other blog readers can be holding you up in prayer.  You can do this by writing a short statement in the comment section of this blog.  Just look to the bottom of this article and click on the small, red "comment" button at the bottom and tell us a little about what is going on.  I can assure you that Corinne and I will be holding you up in prayer personally.  And I trust that many others who read this blog will as well.

Father, I pray a total release of your healing virtue to all who read this testimony today.  Lord I pray that many will be healed by just reading these words.  Not just cancer, Lord, but every affliction that the enemy would send to us.  Lord, we proclaim healing to all who read this, right now!  Thank You for making the way possible through the blood and beating of Your Son, Jesus!

Amen!


Benefits of Extended Meetings

Acts 11: 25, 26 (in regards to Antioch of Syria),  "Then Barnabas went on to Tarsus to look for Saul.  When he found him, he brought him back to Antioch.  Both of them stayed there with the church for a full year, teaching large crowds of people.  (It was at Antioch that the believers were first called Christians.)"

OK, here it is Saturday morning, I'm awake at 5:45 a.m. thinking about all of this.  This is good as the Lord is all over me, it's bad because I'm really running on "dim lights" this morning.  I'm pretty tired!  Last night we ended 7 weeks of meetings in Woodland Assembly of God, Woodland, California.  Last night's meeting was pretty intense.  I preached on love, covenant relationships, etc. and ended the meeting with everyone "washing feet."  (not a traditional foot washing, but wiping off the dust and dirt of life off each others shoes, and blessing them with our prayers)  The people were crying like babies as the Lord's presence came over them as they served and loved each other.  It was very awesome to say the least!  And I am tired, but pumped up in the Spirit as well.

The American Church has allowed a deception to sneak in that has hindered dramatically the purposes of God.  When we do have special meetings, invite an itinerant ministry in, it usually is for a Wednesday evening, or a Sunday morning, or maybe a Sunday evening, etc.  Sometimes we allow for 3 nights in a row.  But that is often the norm today.  When people hear of meetings that extend beyond a week, the thought arises, "What's going on?"  Today our ministers fly all over the Nation, booking one night stands, often a different place, every night of the year.  The thought is, "Lets get as many meetings as possible. !"  It's possible that financial considerations are a motivating factor here.

Pastor Jeff Bills, of Woodland Assembly of God, wrote the following about our meetings of the past 7 weeks,  "Our church has been greatly impacted.  One of the great things God did was use the Silverman's to help people move into ministry.  We're starting some new things and I'll report later as they grow."

I often say that on the first night of a meeting, the people stare at me like a cow looking at a new gate in the fence.... what's that thing?  It takes one night to break the ice.  Then the plowing begins, the sowing takes place and a harvest is brought forth.  This takes time!  What happened in Woodland could not be done in 3 nights.  Another thing you can note from history.... when God's on the move people meet!  And historically speaking when God begins to send sparks, it sometimes takes time to fan them into flames.

Let me suggest that if you have "sparks of revival" being released in your church, blow on them, add some additional meetings, push into all that God has.  No, people will not be able to attend every meeting,  but you might be surprised by how many they will attend, and it always seems that those who come to to as many meetings as possible are those who drink up the most of God. 

Anyway, something to think about, especially if you are in meetings now. 

Oh, one last thing... It is important to bring in itinerant ministry, especially those who are from outside of your area.  Why?  They can bring a different perspective, and possibly release a new anointing to your church.  We love it when churches invite Corinne and I in and turn us loose, allowing us to flow freely in our gifts.  Something always happens.  Even in Woodland, during 7 weeks of meetings, there were no two meetings identical.

There, now I have this off my heart and mind, maybe now I can get a little R & R in today. 

More Lord!

Larry


Snow on the Mountains

Yesterday, Saturday March 4, Corinne and I were in Sacramento.  We enjoyed breakfast with our friends Tom and Connie Wilson.  After eating we were driving east on I -80 and Tom motioned to the skyline and pointed out the clearly visible, regal, Sierra Nevada mountains.  As he did so, he named a couple of the visible passes and peaks, and said something like this, "It's been quite long time since I've seen so much snow on those peaks!"

For the past several days, Northern California is again getting drenched with rain.  On our way to Sacramento yesterday we noted that again the rivers are getting close to the top of their banks, and the flood bypass system just north of Sacramento is flowing high with a strong current of run-off water from the Sacramento River.  (refer to the New Year's floods) Last week even communities at low elevations were getting heavy snow and even having to close school as a result.  One man interviewed on the news said that his community at about 1200 feet elevation, never has had such heavy snow in his memory!

Even as I write this blog article, light rain is hitting the roof of "Pilgrim I!"

The Lord continues to re-enforce in the natural, what He is doing in Northern California in the spiritual.  The Spiritual rain and snow is falling here! 

Please continue to pray for Northern California, and the Pacific Northwest.  This is very important!  And if you are not yet experiencing any new spiritual movement of the Spirit, pray for us here anyway.  Why?  Because "it" is coming your way!

Isaiah 64: 1-5 (NLT), "Oh, that you would burst from the heavens and come down!  How the mountains would quake in your presence!  As fire causes wood to burn and water to boil, your coming would make the nations tremble.  Then your enemies would learn the reason for your fame!  When you came down long ago, you did awesome deeds beyond our highest expectations.  And oh, how the mountains quaked!  For since the world began, no ear has heard, and no eye has seen a God like you, who works for those who wait for him!  You welcome those who gladly do good, who follow godly ways."

The move of God is in it's early stages here.  The rain falling is light right now, only sprinkles.  But the mighty flood is on the way!  The Mountains of God shall be covered in all of their regal glory as this mighty, end of the age, move of God forms and is released upon a dry and thirsty world!

Get ready... I smell revival in the air!  The whole earth shall be filled with the Glory of the Lord!  This includes your community too!

Blessings,

Larry