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Monthly Archives: November 2020

The Top of Carmel Withers

The Prophet & Shepherd, Amos, speaks in striking language when he says: The Lord ROARS FROM ZION; Shepherds mourn; the top of Carmel withers. “Roars from Zion” is attention getting, but the top of Carmel withering should cause anyone who attends or is concerned about their Church to stop and dig deeper into it. It did me. I have been digging into this for a week and am challenged deeply by what I found.

“Top of Carmel” was the place of training/learning and sometimes residence of the Prophets of the Old Testament. Many of the Prophets were contemporaries of Elijah himself–many others came after. The “Prophet” was more of a category of calling. The “Office of the Prophet” sums it up–requiring a life long commitment of training, learning, and growing. Interestingly, many of the Prophets of the Old Testament times don’t have any “Books” in the Old Testament. The Prophet was called by God into a special ministry to address and redress the culture of the times. The “Top of Carmel” was a revered place of valued spiritual vitality. The “withering” of the top of Carmel indicates that slow downward vortex of losing the luster of spiritual vitality–the condition Amos addresses by naming geographical neighbors to Israel (Judah in his text) with his main concentration on the “sins” of Israel itself.

When I got to examining Amos’ use of “the top of Carmel withering” I realized he was not talking about a event, but a process. He is addressing the slow degenerative loss of the “Office of the Prophet” in the culture of ministry. By the way, when I write, speak, or refer to the “Office of the Prophet” I am not talking about some cult-like “Fore-teller of the future,” rather, I am talking about the front line, spiritually up-to-date, “FORTH-TELLER.” The modern day Prophet lays it out for God’s people. He/She challenges us with spiritual concept and understanding. Is the modern day Prophet a “perfect person?” No. Used by God? Yes. Does their walk match their talk? Hopefully–but the character of the Prophet is not near as important as the challenge the Prophet brings.

The “top of the Carmel whithers” because the Prophets are not addressing the sins of the culture. “Addressing” the sins is an intentional term. “Address” is different from CONDEMNING. When you (condemn) you take away any space for redemptive change. “Address” is different from JUDGMENT. When you (judge) you are creating a condescending culture of pride. “Addressing” the sins of the culture, like Amos does in chapter one and two of his Old Testament book, gives those who are transgressing the opportunity to realize the sin, repent, and feel true redeeming qualities in their life once again.

“Addressing” the sins of the neighbors (we will look at the “neighbors” in a moment) is only part of the issue with the “withering” of the top of Carmel. The other issue is–what happened to the Prophet that the top of Carmel would wither? It is NOT the Prophet that is absent (today); It is NOT the Office of the Prophet that is absent either; It is the ATTENTIVENESS OF THE PROPHET that is missing. The Prophet is “missing in action” because the modern day Prophets are more concerned with things like:

COLLABERATING WITH THE “CREATIVE TEAM” THAN COLLABERATING WITH GOD.

or:

CREATING A PITHY NEW SERIES THAT WILL “GET THE ENERGY UP” WITH PEOPLE RATHER THAN SEEK THE FLOW AND DIRECTION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.

or:

FINDING THE RIGHT “BRAND” SO THAT “THE COMMUNITY WILL BE EXCITED BY WHAT IS HAPPENING” RATHER THAN SPENDING TIME ALONE WITH GOD.

The modern Prophet has “withered” the top of Carmel by being more concerned about keeping people happy (and attending) than confronting them with going deeper spiritually. The “pleaser” essentially “withers” the top of Carmel.

Amos addresses the sins of the neighbors and then bears down on the sins of Israel. The parallel is: When Amos addresses the main sins of Damacus, Gaza, Tyre, Edom, Ammon, and Moab, he is addressing the general spirit of sin that has emerged in the culture. When Amos addresses the seven or so sins of the seventh (his beloved people, Israel) he is bringing it into our inner lives.

The thing about the “Office of the Prophet” is how CURRENT the ancient (and even the ancient of the ancient) things seem. Here they are in Amos Chapter 1 and 2:

  1. DAMACUS 1:3–“SIN OF EXCESSIVENESS”: Interpreted by the way Amos uses the concept of “threshing.”
  2. GAZA 1:6–“SIN OF POLITICS”: Amos talks about the concept of “deportation.” Inside the idea emerges how corrupt politics is at its core. The modern day Prophets have allowed politics of the Church to control what they say and do. The politics of the world have corrupted everything we do and say.
  3. TYRE 1:9–“SIN OF FAVORITISM OR ‘BACK SCRATCHING'”: “Didn’t remember the covenant of brotherhood” comes from what Amos is describing.
  4. EDOM 1:11–“SIN OF ABUSIVENESS–PHYSICAL OR EMOTIONAL OR VERBAL”: Amos says, “pursued his brother with the sword” which prophetically describes abuse.
  5. AMMON 1:13–“SIN OF ABORTION”: “Ripped open pregnant women”
  6. MOAB 2:1–“SIN OF CRUCIFYING THE CHARACTER OF OTHERS”: Amos description is the “descretion of the corspe of the King” and burning his bones. Prophetically this addresses how we speak of our leaders–any leader (any where). We need to be very cautious in the use of our words.
  7. ISRAEL 2–“SIN OF IDOLATRY”: The breaking of the first (and greatest) command–“Have no other gods before me” has been broken and not challenged. The Prophet has allowed selfishness to rule the day, and is himself/herself self absorbed as well. The idolatry of selfishness is described 7 ways by Amos–

a. Not keeping the Word of God central in all areas of life. 2:4

b. Lying. Twisting the truth–spinning the truth. 2:4

c. Unteachableness. 2:4

d. Money. Selling out for money. 2:6

e. Sexual impropriety. 2:7

f. Disrespectful and Drunkards. 2:8

g. Pride. 2:9

Let’s knock it off and get with it! BRING BACK THE TOP OF CARMEL–LISTEN FOR THE ROAR OF THE LION OF JUDAH OUT OF ZION. If not now, when?

Much Love,

Marc Royer

DAY 0–OF A 40 DAY COUNT DOWN

Today, Tuesday, November 3, 2020 is the day! This is the conclusion of the “40 Day Window of the Watchmen of Prayer.” Deepest appreciation to all of you who involved yourselves in a strategic and disciplined way to be “Watchmen of Prayer,” setting our prayer alarms for 9 AM; NOON; 3 PM; 6 PM and praying for repentance of our sins, thankfulness for God’s presence, and our need for God’s help in these times. Let’s do this one final day. (I don’t know what God has for us next, but we have one final day to do this before the “Window” is closed). TODAY ALL DAY LET’S IMPLORE THE “KEYS TO THE KINDGOM OF HEAVEN.” Jesus gave us the “keys.” There are two. One is “binding” and the other is “loosing.” Further, Jesus gave us an extremely powerful spiritual truth–when we invoke the two keys on earth, they are the “key” to having God’s immediate attention. The two keys, binding and loosing, were guaranteed by Jesus to be the “buttons to push.” The way to implement these two keys is to invoke one (binding) and immediately follow up with the other key (loosing). This process is not only necessary, but the only way these powerful spiritual resources work. I invite you to set your prayer alarms this last day of our “Window” and invoke the “KEYS TO THE KINGDOM” over seven important areas. Pray as if God is depending on Christ followers to provide the prayer cover here on earth for Him to work. 9 AM; NOON; 3 PM and 6 PM.1. In a spirit of prayer let’s bind “CONFUSION” and loose “CLARITY.” The enemy brings confusion, God brings clarity. 2. In a spirit of prayer let’s bind “CHAOS” and loose “CALM.” The enemy is the author of any kind of chaos. God always calms the raging sea. 3. In a spirit of prayer let’s bind “UNREST” and loose “UNITY.” (Brace yourself on this one). When we pray for (unity) God is gentle with us, but we have seen all through history God really stoke it up so that people get their eyes of their own selfish desires and unify for a common purpose. 4. In a spirit of prayer let’s bind “SIN” and loose “THE HOLY SPIRIT.” This is a strong one. WATCH OUT, STAND BACK, BE VIGILANT –BELIEVE! 5. In a spirit of prayer let’s bind “LAZINESS” and loose “RENEWAL.” 6. In a spirit of prayer let’s bind “APATHY” and loose “WISDOM.” 7. In a spirit of prayer let’s bind “SELFISHNESS” and loose “YIELDEDNESS.” Seven ideas to invoke the “KEYS TO THE KINGDOM” upon today. This has been an honor. Thank you all again for praying, sharing, and following. Oh…one more thing…she might kill me, so if I’m never heard from again you will know what happened. Today is also Dr. Marceil Royer’s birthday. That’s right, November 3rd each year. We have already voted, so all we will be praying and celebrating all day. God Bless and Much, Much Love to each of you! Marc & Marceil (today’s birthday girl)—humm….I need to get candles for the cake, but I don’t know how to light that many candles in one place without setting off the smoke alarm. Ha!

1st Day of 40 (OR BASICALLY THE LAST DAY) This has been a “count down” of sorts. Best to go down the blog to the 40th Day and work this way!

Today, Monday, November 2, 2020 is ONE DAY away from the November, 3, 2020, Election Day in the United States. If you are reading this statement for the first time, it will be out of context for what I have been doing the last 39 (for a total of 40 days before the election). Even if this is the first time you are hearing about the “40 Day Window of the Watchmen” please join us today! The Window is about to close, but that doesn’t mean we can’t/shouldn’t have as many people as possible join us. Just like the Watchmen on the Wall of the ancient Middle Eastern Cities would stand guard and every three hours give a report of what they were observing on the horizon, we are Watchmen who join together (setting prayer alarms) for 9 AM; NOON; 3 PM; 6 PM and praying for repentance of our sins and thankfulness for God’s presence and intervention. In addition, we need to pray for something extra special today AND tomorrow. (Maybe all week)The United States needs a serious, strong, and extensive prayer cover for REACTION to our election. There is nothing partisan, political, or (pleasurable) about speaking in these terms: IT DOES NOT MATTER WHO WINS OR LOSES THE ELECTION(S)–local election; state election; federal election–THERE IS GOING TO BE STRONG REACTION. There will be everything from attitude to evil attitude to unsettled to unrest to looting to loss (and even loss of life). WE NEED GOD’S HELP! We need the Watchmen of Prayer to pray for God’s peace and covering over everyone and every nation. The enemy is the author and master planner of chaos and confusion and he and his minions are on the move. But “greater is He that is in me than he that it is the world.” HERE IS HOW I WOULD BOIL IT DOWN:1. We need to pray for God’s peace and presence in the people’s thinking and process over the next few days. Someone is going to win and someone is going to lose. One issue (of dozens and dozens of issues) is the question: When will we know? The truth is, the way our Presidential Elections are determined via the Constitution of the United States of America is through an “Electoral College” system. (Here goes the civics lesson again. Ha!)–the “Electoral College” was set up by our Founding Fathers to secure the authenticity of the election–not “steal an election.” Officially speaking, it takes two to four to six weeks to certify a Presidential Election. It is actually the press media who set up “exit polls” and determine who is going to win state to state elections the day of or the night of the election. Presidential candidates get caught up in all the hype to the point where one will “concede” the election to the other way before the election is ever certified. In other words, elections are never, and rarely ever “certified” by midnight of Election Day. Now back to praying–WE NEED TO ASK GOD TO HELP US ALL TAKE IT DOWN A NOTCH. TAKE A BREATH. WE NEED GOD’S PEACE AND PRESENCE. 2. We need God’s protection. What do we need protected from? Answer: Ourselves! We need to be protected from ourselves. Everyone is on “overdrive.” This year has brought a lot on us, but not too much on us. God has been present every step, every moment, every breath. We need to realize that in the midst of all the drama, God’s will is the most important thing of all. The news is reporting the high end stores on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, the Fashion Stores in the Soo Hoo area of New York City, and other locations including all 350 Nordstrom Stores, Tiffany Stores, and Sak’s Fifth Avenue Stores are boarding up doors and windows preparing for the coming unrest (and looting) in the streets. I get it. If I owned one of those stores I would pray for God’s protection and use 3/4 inch plywood over anything that could be broken. But before we start pointing fingers at one side or the other, remember that no matter what side you are on, there is the potential for people to take their opinion way too far and even (over the edge). 3. God is the only one we can depend upon. Please don’t put your faith in a person, no matter how strongly you feel about his/her accomplishments. The danger and destruction comes when we feel so passionately about a certain “side we are on” that we lose our sense of perspective. LET GOD BE GOD AND HELP US DETERMINE OUR DIRECTION. We need Him right now. Vote your conviction. Live in your conviction. BUT LET YOUR “VOICE” BE GOD’S. Instead of “one voice, one vote” let it be–one vote, BUT GOD’S VOICE. The reason we are setting our prayer alarms for 9 AM; NOON; 3 PM; 6 PM is to hear GOD’S VOICE. I know the old saying “you can’t pray for stupid.” I hope we understand that we aren’t praying about people’s “reaction to the news.” We are praying for a strong PRAYER COVER for people to (Process) the news. If the PRAYER COVER IS STRONG ENOUGH–which comes by all of us uniting and joining our prayers together, God’s presence will be felt strongly (all around the world)!God Bless and Much Love, Marc & Marceil

2nd Day of 40

Today, Sunday, November 1, 2020, is 2 days from the November 3, 2020, Election Day in the United States. Please join me over these next two days in being “Watchmen” of prayer by setting our prayer alarms for the day time “Watches” of 9 AM; Noon; 3 PM; 6 PM from whatever time zone you live or whether you remembered it was the day you turned your clocks back an hour or not. (Of course, if you are using a cell phone for the alarm, it is already handled for you). Let’s use these 4 times to pray for repentance of sins and thankfulness for God’s presence (like we have each time during this “40 Day Window of the Watchmen” but add something to our prayers today. On this Sunday, with the 40 Day Window closing (and with God beginning to do something new in/through us), let’s unite our prayers in offering up healing for all those who are sick. The news reports this “second surge” being more potent than the first. It may be after all these months the virus is finally making its way completely around our country–but NO MATTER, let’s pray for healing. Specifically, let’s pray for healing that gives God the credit for the healing. No disrespect to the front line workers, or those working on medications and vaccines, or those who have recovered from the virus already–BUT–THERE IS A SERIOUS LACK OF PEOPLE SPEAKING ABOUT THE GOODNESS OF GOD IN THIS PROCESS. It is probably part of our national sin–to take the credit for something that is obviously God, but it is happening again. I actually heard one person who had COVID, and I asked people to pray for healing, say in public “I must be one strong person.” (He actually said “one H… of a strong person”–but I didn’t want to be too dramatic). LET’S BE A LITTLE DRAMATIC FOR A MOMENT: We DESPERATELY need God’s help in combatting this terrible pandemic. How can we, how could we possible risk His favor by asking for His help and intervention, and then not mention Him when He brought healing into our lives (or the life of a loved one)?Then it occurs to me: We do it all the time! (We ignore God’s presence, God’s help, God’s intervention, God’s teaching), and take the “credit” ourselves. In fact we turn God’s presence in our time of trouble into our own prideful opportunities. Every single moment–every single breath–every single day we live are because of God’s mercy and graciousness to us. We need to live it out in our lives–not taking personal pride in accomplishment–but living a gracious life in God’s mercy. In our times of repentance, thankfulness, and healing for the sick these 4 times today, let’s go deeper!God Bless and Much Love, Marc & Marceil