Previous month:
March 2007
Next month:
May 2007

One Man or Many!

Greetings from Woodland, CA!

The other day our good friend Tammy Bills, wife of our pastor here, Jeff Bills, gave us 3 of her books to read.  The books are, "Supernatural: The Life of William Branham." Many know of Branham's life and ministry.  His miracle working ministry was powerful back in the 1940's - early 1960's.  During the last months of his life and ministry Branham fell into doctrinal error.  Yet in the early days of his ministry, he was used greatly by God.

I am posting a direct quote from the book below.  Once again the Book is, "Supernatural: The Life of William Branham."  This quote is from "Book Three: The Man and His Commission (1946-1950)  by: Owen Jorgensen and published by: Tucson Tabernacle, 2555 North Stone Ave., Tucson, AZ 85705 USA.  (ISBN 0-9700955-3-8) pages 46 & 46.

"In Jonesboro during that Fall of 1946, William Branham stayed on the platform for eight straight days and nights, praying for a steady stream of sick and needy.  He ate his meals on the platform and napped behind the pulpit while those in the prayer line stood patiently waiting for him to wake up and resume his work.  By the end of the week, Bill's forehead throbbed with weariness.  The backs of his hands were raw where he had pulled out the hairs, trying to keep himself awake.  Still he did not want to stop.  He wanted to stay there until he had prayed for every sick person who came through the doors- but he couldn't.  The news of healings and miracles was like a magnet, drawing thousands more to Jonesboro throughout the week.  When Bill finally did quit on the eighth night of that Jonesboro healing campaign, the prayer line was longer than it was when he started.

Bill felt exhausted, physically and mentally.  Pastor Reed put him to bed, but Bill felt so jittery that he couldn't fall asleep.  He thrashed back and forth under the covers for hours.  At last, rather than fight it, he decided to drive home to Jeffersonville and collapse in his own bed, where hopefully he could sleep for days undisturbed. 

After a few hours of driving, Bill had trouble keeping his eyelids open.  To keep himself from falling asleep behind the steering wheel, he beat his leg against  the door until the paneling dented out of shape.  Once he did doze off.  A blaring horn jerked him awake, giving him just enough time to swerve back to his side of the road.  Shaken, he pulled the car over and stopped so he could get himself together.  Meda (Note from Larry:  Meda was Wm Branham's wife) was still asleep in the back seat.  Bill got out, hoping that a walk would refresh him.  Somewhere he lost himself to exhaustion.  When he finally came back to his senses, he found himself standing in a cow pasture with his hands stretched out, mumbling, "Only believe, Sister.  That's all you have to do.  Just believe."  He shook his head fiercely, thinking, "What is the matter with me?  I seem to be coming apart." 

Reaching Jeffersonville late in the evening, they stopped at Meda's parents house to pick up their children.  Rebekah was now five months old.  Bill had not seen her for three months, so it was not surprising that she did  not recognize him.  When he tried to hold her she cried and struggled to get  back to her mother.  That hurt.  "She doesn't know me, " he complained. 

Calming Rebekah with the swing of her body Meda nodded at a picture of Bill propped up on an end table.  "I've got that same picture of you sitting on our dresser.  Everyday I've pointed to it and told her, 'that is your Daddy.'" 

Bill looked at the picture, then at his face in the hall mirror.  "No wonder she doesn't recognize me.  I've lost 20 pounds, I've lost some hair, and my shoulders stoop.   I don't look the same at all."

Another shock awaited them when they drove up to their own house - cars lined both sides of the street for several blocks, and there were nearly 200 people waiting for him in his yard."

After reading this portion of the book I was completely over whelmed by the ministry of "Brother Branham."  He actually ministered to and healed many thousand people.  With no advertising, and only by word of mouth, as many as 25,000 people would attend his meetings, and most of those who were sick were healed.  God greatly used this man.   Yet, I wanted to share the above quote as it dramatically shows the extreme life style that this man of God had to endure in order to fulfill his calling.  I can't help to think that God is no longer in the "one person ministry" any longer.  As I read this account I prayed fervently, "Lord raise up millions of William Branhams!  Empower Your Church to do the great works of the ministry." 

Several years ago, during meetings in the Washington DC area, we met a man who was a part of Binny Hinn's ministry.  The same time we were having meetings in a  small local church, Benny Hinn was packing out the downtown convention center with better than 45,000 people.  Our youngest daughter Ashley was traveling with us in those days, and she was able to attend the youth meetings at the Hinn crusade.  Ashley actually got pulled up on the platform and Binny Hinn and Rinehart Bonke layed hands on her and prayed for her.  However, Ashley's report was that of thousands thronging to be healed by the healer.  Many were actually rude and shoved others out of the way in order to get "their healing."  Ashley mentioned that Binny Hinn had called the youth forward for prayer, as that meeting was designated as youth night.  Yet hundreds of adults actually shoved the youth out of the way so that they could get prayer instead!

God gave me an important vision after Ashley's report and I was able to share this vision with the man who worked for Benny Hinn.  The vision simply was this.... I saw 45,000 people getting packed into the crusade.  Then from there I saw the same people, getting Benny Hinn's anointing for healing the sick, and being released back into the streets of Washington DC.  Within days the city was changed and transformed!

Folks... God is no longer in the one man show!  He's calling His Body, millions of us, to heal the sick, cast out demons, raise the dead and preach the Gospel of the Kingdom of God.  I for one want the anointing of William Branham.  For sure, I'll pray for thousands, but also, I'll be giving it away to hundreds of thousands so that our world can be healed and transformed, thus advancing the Kingdom of God!

Kingdom blessings ~ Larry

My web site: www.larrysilverman.com


Lady Preachers!

Greetings from Woodland, CA

Wednesday evening Corinne and I drove our "toad," our tow behind the motor home car, to Fremont, CA (south east San Francisco Bay Area).  We had a meeting with our friends at Gateway to Love Ministries there.  (We are also going to be there Sunday morning at 11:00 a.m.  See our itinerary page at: www.larrysilverman.com for details).

Corinne preached Wednesday night.  Her message was awesome, and as she prayed and ministered to the Saints, you could sense the love of God flowing through her to those she was laying hands on.  I love watching Corinne minister!  Often I just sit back and become awe-struck as she unfolds revelation.  My wife moves very powerfully and accurately in prophetic gifts.  When she begins to minister to someone it's often wise to have a box of tissues available, as they WILL be needed.  Once she prophetically ministered to everyone in a meeting, one by one.  The pastor stood by completely astonished.  I remember him saying to me as we were observing the happenings, "Larry, I can't believe this!  She's reading every one of them right on!" 

Now the purpose of this blog is to not promote or brag on my wife of 40 years.  Although, I love doing that!  The true purpose is to promote the great ministries in many of my Sisters from around the country.  God is calling our women to stand up in ministry!  So many of my Sisters have such intense callings of God in their lives, but they only think of themselves as being an intercessor or a Sunday school teacher, or .....etc., etc.  Not that these are not important!  However, how much more is there for them?  Corinne used to think that her ministry was limited to leading Sunday school or Jr. Church programs.  Important?  Certainly!  But you should see her now!

In the late 1800's and early 1900's there was a powerful woman minister,  Maria Woodworth-Etter.  See the link below for more information on Etter:

https://www.godsgenerals.com/person_m_woodsworth-etter.htm?src=overture

If you ever get a chance pick up a copy of her book, "The Diary of Signs and Wonders."  In this  book Etter shares of her ministry as well as hundreds of powerful testimonies of healing and miracles.  Sister Etter, as she was often called, moved in Pentecostal power way before the great Azuza Street Revival of the early 1900's.  In her meetings there were many accounts of people in trances, falling to the ground as if dead, speaking in tongues, and this was way before 1900, even before the Topeka outbreak of praying in tongues.  One of Sister Etter's greatest problems to over come was that she was a woman.  She had to personally overcome the concept that women couldn't minster even before she acknowledged her call to ministry.  I am certain that if she had been a man, the historians would have given more credence in Pentecostal history to her than to the happenings at the Azuza St. mission.

So, here's the point today.... To all of my Sisters, full of ministry.... go for it!  Let the Holy Spirit propel you into all of your fullness.  Go start a revival someplace!

Just some thoughts today from a man who is in love with his wife, and greatly appreciates all that she does in the ministry!

Blessings ~ Larry

my website: www.larrysilverman.com


Porn Struggles

Note from Larry:  You may not be aware of the fact that I am one of the moderators on www.openheaven.com.  This is an exciting Internet hangout for believers, espeically those hungry for revival and a closer walk with God.  You can go to this website, fill out a simple registration form, and take avantage of all of the forums, digests, etc.  Back in Feb. I wrote an article for one of the forums that I am moderator over, dealing with "Encountering Life's Struggles."  A reader asked for help with their struggles with porn.  I felt to re-post my response and that article to this blog.  Many hundred of people have read this article, and I trust that it will be a benefit to you as well.   

Porn Struggles?

What’s a modern, red blooded, American man supposed to do? This week I was turning on the nightly news and the lead story was of the tragic life and death of Anna Nicole Smith. The video clips came on with every suggestive pose this woman has ever made in her life. If that isn’t enough, open any magazine, watch any TV comercial or for that matter sit-com, look at just about every highway bill board, and we have to take note that we are totally bombarded with sexualty!

For sometime now I’ve been thinking of writing a short aticle on this subject for Openheaven.com and then this week we received the following email request from one of our new OH members, “how do I get free of porn. its strangulating hold on me? From Confused Girl” Now the interesting thing here is that this request for help came from a girl not a man! So the problem with pornography is not just a male problem.

There is absolutely zero need to address all the issues of porn. We all know about the bad effects Pornograpy has, we’ve read many articles on this. Christians who are occupied with pornography have read every book and magazine article and have listened to sermons, watched DVD’s and even internet ministry on the subject, seeking aid for their dilemma. Most are able to write the help book themselves. So we do not have to go into all of basics here, therefore please allow me the chance to address some of my current thoughts on this subject, hopefully thus offering some hope to those in need.

Thought #1: Pornography is sin, but it is also an addiction.

Repentance is always the answer for sin, but we go on to treat the addiction.

For the Christian much has been written about the sin nature of pornography. Again, I do not feel compelled to address all of that in this article. However I do wish to call your attention to the addictive aspect of porn. Without getting scientific here, we do know that when one does anything stimulating, one risks the potential of addiction. Even things that are helpful often contain a risk of addiction. No better example could be the simple pain pill that one takes for a medical purpose. In certain situations that pill can turn into a bleek, many headed monster. We have all heard of people who been prescribed pain pills and ended up in drug rehab. Any form of stimulation, good or bad, can lead to addiction. We all know one effect of sex is stimulation. In short, it feels good! Therefore take a porn pill, view a beautiful model on the internet, it feels good. The effect of this is the need for more. Once that happens we are hooked, fully addicted.

OK, we confess our porn sin. Then tomorrow we get involved again. Condemnation follows and the cycle is repeated again and again, and our feelings of self worth vanish. We quickly find ourselves not doing anything for God due to our lack of Christian values, etc. If we understand the addictive nature of pornography we can more fully deal with it. We’ve been told that given 90 days we can break any addiction. If that is the case, then we must begin making 90 days our goal. If you are free from porn for 2 days and then fall into repeat involvement, the answer is to not quit, but rather, take note of the 2 days of victory, and then try to make it 3 days the next time. The goal here is to become porn free for 90 days!

Thought #2: God still loves you just as much as those who have never been involved with porn.

This concept it imperitive to take notice of. There is NEVER anything that we can do that creates an atmosphere where God can love us more than He already does!

Please note Ephesians 3:18-19 (NLT), “And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.”

Now look at Romans 8:38-39 (NLT), “And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tommorw-not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below-indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

It doesn’t get any more powerful that this! Despite the consequences of your porn involvement, God still loves you just the same! He is on your side and by your revelation of the understanding of His love, you bring Him into your equation of daily reaching your 90 day goal of freedom from porn’s additive hold on you. Friend, God is on your team! As you draw close to Him, His strenght within you begins to manifest.

Think about how when we commit sin, the first thing we do is to retreat from God. Adam and Eve did this in the Garden. After they fell, they ran from Him. God still showed up in the Garden that night, “Adam, Eve…. Where are you?” Our First Forefather and Mother, must have been saying to themselves, “God’s looking for us so that He can destroy us, let’s run further from His presence!” Listen, you must make it a point to run towards God! As you read this, stir yourself up and seek Him. Repent of your sin and then worship Him. That’s right, Now… worship Him! Your hands were unclean, but now through repentance they have been cleansed. His love for you is unchanged, go ahead, Worship Him! Let Him minister His love to you. Allow Him into the fulness of your heart.

Thought #3: Do something for God!

Very often towards the end of a powerful Holy Spirit meeting, a young man will come to me and say something like, “Brother Larry, I just need to talk to you in private about something.” I know exactally what he’s going to tell me. He’s going to say something like, “I’m involved in porn and I feel so bad and I just can’t get free, and I’ll never be able to ever do anything for God.” And of course, so often, very sadly the Church has re-enforced this very same concept. It is interesting to note how we are so quick to judge others and condemn them into non-activity within the Kingdom! After listening to these young people, who’ve been sidelined into Kingdom bench warming, I like to share some of these thoughts with them, but my final words usually go something like this, “OK, so you’re involved in porn, repent, and go from here and start a great revival somewhere!” Sometimes it amazes me how the enemy has won so many battles. He does so by taking all of our good soldiers and side lines them over issues of sin and condemnation. Listen, as long as you stay inactive in Kingdom matters, you will continue in the chains of addictive bondage! That’s right…. Go do something for God! OK, so you were involved in pornography yesterday, then go start a Kingdom revival today. Once the enemy knows that you cannot be stopped or sidelined due to porn addiction, you will find that the temptations will lessen, and your victorious days free from porn involvement will increase. You will find yourself helped on your journey to your 90 day goal. Jesus died to set all captives free. No addiction can stand up to the Blood of Christ that takes away the sin of the world!

There is so much more that I could write on this subject. But hopefully these thoughts will help you some. I want you to know that we at Openheaven.com are praying for you. You will over come this problem, and it will be soon!

My prayer is that God will bless you greatly as you go forward into all of His love and blessings. I have to agree completely with Paul’s prayer, that you too will understand fully His love for you!

Go forth today into His freedom!

Kingdom blessings,

Larry


__________________
Dr. Larry Silverman, M.C./Psy., M.Min., D.C./Psy.
www.larrysilverman.com
www.larrysilverman.blogs.com


Why Some Churches Grow

Greetings from Woodland, CA

Note from Larry:  Corinne and I wish you a very wonderful Easter.  I just keep hearing, "Christ the Lord has Risen Today...Hallelujah!"  Our enemy is doing everything possible to snuff out the truth about the miraculous resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Take away the resurrection and we loose out on the benefits of our salvation.  The Good News is that today Jesus lives!

                                                                           Why Some Churches Grow

Have you ever taken note of the fact that some churches seem to grow at great rates and others never seem to grow at all?  Of course, if you are a pastor or a leader in your church, you certainly have taken note of this fact, sometimes even to the point of frustration, like..... "what can we do to make our church grow like the mega-church down the street?"

Years ago, after planting and pastoring a new church in a mid-size Midwestern town, I began to take note of another church that began about that same time ours did, in another section of town.  Our church had many shakeups and bad things happen.  We had church splits, and all types of problems, while the other church, on the other side of town, seemed to grow and prosper.  Their growth seemed measured at first, but then later they grew into a small mega-church.  During that season of my ministry, I became very bitter and actually jealous of that other church.  I really felt that our church was a better church.  But something was happening with them that just never seemed to happen with ours.  One day Corinne and I were in the local Walmart store and as we were standing in the check out line we overheard the lady running the cash register, telling everyone in line ahead of us..."You should have been at " ______Church" (name withheld) Sunday!  Wow... we had such a wonderful time and the worship was just so awesome, etc., etc., etc."  Of course that old jealous spirit rose up with in me and I grew very angry, and I almost threw up right there in the middle of that check out line! 

In the car, and in great anger I shouted to Corinne...."How come our people are not out telling the town about what God is doing in our church?"  We had exciting things happening in those days.  We were chasing hard after revival and actually had a move of God taking place at the time, we even had many people getting healed of serious conditions, but the vast majority of our visitors came only as a result of the word getting out on the Internet, not our people inviting their neighbors, friends, and relatives!

                                                         Are Churches Supposed to Grow?

If our church is a more traditional church that meets in a building on the corner of 5th and Main, or if our church is one of the multitudes of house churches or simple churches that are springing up like wildfire all over the Nation, our churches are supposed to grow in numbers!  I used to say about our church, "We are growing spiritually but not numerically!"  I think that often that was just my excuse or apology for why our church wasn't getting larger, with new families being added all the time.  It was a very poor excuse, yet that is what I often hear as we minister in small churches that never seem to grow. 

Churches are supposed to grow.  Why?  Because we are on a divine mandate, not just to build wonderful, large, mega-churches, but to completely conquer our regions for the Lord Jesus Christ.  By the way, it's a proven fact that new church planting is a wonderful way to take dominance over a region.  The churches of the New Testament grew.  Our great model, the Jerusalem Church, on the day of Pentecost grew by 3000 in one day!  Yes, the Holy Spirit was in operation, but He's doing things now too. 

                                                          The Key Missing Element 

Why then do some churches grow and others do not?  Why do some churches utilize program after program and nothing seems to happen, nothing seems to change in their church growth venture?  There is one key element, and in small churches that are not growing, that element is a missing element.  The element is: YOU!  Most likely you are the key missing element.  For some unknown reason some people in some churches just refuse to invite others to their church.  In other cases, like the lady checker in the Walmart store, some constantly tell others their excited story about their church.  You know that lady that day was bragging on her church, but actually she was bragging about her God!  As angry as I was then with that Walmart checker's actions and words, I think it is so neat now!

Today I received an email from a friend of mine, Kathy.  I met Kathy several years ago when we were planting a new simple church in a small Midwestern town.  Kathy is a city council member of that small town, and she's excited about the Lord and about her church.  This small town is getting a new city manager, a gal from the other side of the State.  Kathy sent her an email and in her excitement about her church, sent me a copy of it too.  Here's Kathy's email:

"Hi Larry,

I invited our prospective new City Manager to visit our church when they get  settled.  I am excited and  hopeful for change in our town more than ever.   The new Manager currently attends another denomination but I hope she will check our church out. (I hope you will too  when you get back to town.)  Pastor Barry isn't content for folks to  just warming a pew and gently pushes us towards a more personal  relationship with Christ and to SERVE!   I think you would like him  even though you like more non- traditional church settings.   He reminds us that WE are the church, the building is just that, a  building.  So...I am formally inviting you and your family to visit  us when you can!   ~ Kathy"

Kathy is excited about her church!  Guess what, when we're in that town next, we'll try to give her church a visit!  I also forwarded her email to some folks in the region that are looking for a new church.  Excitement is contagious!  I caught Kathy's excitement this morning and I'm now on her band wagon, inviting people to her church, and I've never been there!!!!  Wow!

So, my question is:  Are you the "Key Missing Element?"  Or are you excited about God and what He's doing in your church?  If you are not excited, I think that is is probably a great time to spend some time with the Lord, asking Him why you are not reaching out to others.

If you are in a more traditional church, catch the vision of taking your City for the Lord.  If you are a part of a non-traditional house church or simple church, don't fool yourself.  God has a whole lot more in store for you than just setting on the sofa each meeting.  Folks we have cities to take, regions to win for the Lord.  Remember.... "It's the Spring of the year, the normal time when Kings go to war!"

Church of Jesus Christ it is now time for you to advance!

Kingdom blessings !~ Larry

my webpage: www.larrysilverman.com