MEET MIKE AND BETH Part Two

Blog 47 July 17, 2017 MIRACLES NEVER CEASE!

angel

Robert Wise explores the world of Divine intervention from an objective point of view. Can 21st Century people believe that the hand of God touches people in today’s world?

Read and you’ll find new insights.

We are currently exploring the experience of persons with consistent divine intervention in their lives and ministries. The Reverends Mike and Beth Owen are one of those couples who daily touch many lives.

Beth’s first angelic encounter came when she was fifteen-years-old and her aunt Barbara was dying. The family had already felt the impact of the death of her mother’s brother as well as two sisters and now another sister stood at death’s door. After an urgent phone call, Beth and her mother rushed to the hospital. As they stepped out of the elevator door, the announcement of a “Code Red” rang down the hall. Attendants rushed passed them but they were too late.

As they were leaving the hospital, Beth and her mother were standing at the street corner when Beth looked up. To her astonishment, she saw two massive white angels hovering above them. The angels stood on each side of Barbara.

Beth exclaimed, “Look, Mom! They’ve come to take Barbara home!”

Taller than the city street light, Beth could see the massive size of their waist, legs, and feet as they ascended vertically upward. As they disappeared out of sight, Beth knew her understanding of God’s loving care was forever changed. The comfort of an all comprehensive peace settled over them.

These early experiences caused Michael and Beth to anticipate divine interventions in their ministries. They were conditioned to expect far more than simply sharing theological answers and teaching children about the faith. Their ministries have encompassed a number of miraculous events.

While Mike and Beth were pastoring a church, much of Beth’s time was given to pastoral care. A young woman came for counseling because she and her husband had not been able to conceive a child. She was coming to the end of her rope and beginning to believe it would never happen. Despair had settled in.

After anointing her with consecrated oil, Beth laid her hands on the woman’s head and prayed. Much like the story from I Samuel when Hannah came to Shiloh to pray for a child, the young woman earnestly pleaded for God to work. Beth had an unusual feeling that as she interceded, she sensed the woman would conceive.

Nine months later, a beautiful baby was born. During the next few years, the couple had more children. The family was convinced that the turning point came during those earlier moments of prayer. Always hesitant to share this story because of how it might be received by other parents seeking a child, Beth believes the anointing, laying on of hands, and prayer provided a special encounter with grace as the Lord of life brought forth new life. After the child was born, Beth celebrated the baptism of this child.

The gift of life had been given and consecrated.

 

 

MEET MIKE AND BETH Part One

Blog 46 July 10, 2017 MIRACLES NEVER CEASE! Robert Wise explores the world of Divine intervention from an objective point of view. Can 21st Century people believe that the hand of God touches people in today’s world? Read and you’ll find new insights.

I have known Mike and Beth Owen for over 25 years. We have worked together, socialized, debated ideas, and watched their children grow up. When we are both in town, Mike and I have lunch together every Tuesday. They remain our best of friends. Much of what I report comes from moments of personal observation. The Owens can share important insights with us. We’ll learn some new aspect of miraculous ministry.

Michael and Beth Owen are both ordained Christian Ministers and have been in full-time ministry for 34 years. Their two children Roman and Hannah are both successful athletes, coaches, and Roman is first assistant basketball coach at Yale University. Merging their highly divergent backgrounds led them through ministry in the Baptist Church, planting a Vineyard Fellowship, and finally becoming clergy in the Communion of Evangelical Episcopal Churches. Along the way they discovered a ministry with divine interventions and miraculous encounters. How did such occur?

On a Saturday night when Michael was a child, he knelt down beside his bed and asked the Lord to show him if he should surrender his life to Jesus Christ. Mike sensed that making a decision for Christ might require something that he might not be ready to give up because he would be stepping into the unknown. Mike inwardly knew the Holy Spirit was calling him to make such a decision but he couldn’t release control of his life as seemed to be required. At that moment, the totally unexpected followed. An angel appeared in his bedroom. Little did he know this encounter was the beginning of a life-long journey of faith.

For untold generations, Beth’s family have been Irish Roman Catholics. As a young child, she sat in a church with stained glass windows depicting the mighty deeds of saints with statues of angels near the altar. The world of candles, incense, and sacraments created in her an awareness of both the transcendence and imminence of God. She grew up believing that God the Father continually interacted with his people in a personal, real, and tangible way.

Let’s go back to Mike’s childhood bedroom.

In the corner of the bedroom, an angel in a bright white and turquoise robe floated above the floor. Tall and larger than life, the angel stood there smiling at him. Illuminated in a glowing light, the angel conveyed personal assurance. While there was no verbal communication, the angel’s smile answered his prayers. Mike knew what he needed to do in church the next day.

Today Michael prays daily, “Dear Lord please release your Holy Angels to watch over and protect my family and me and all those we carry in our hearts.”

During the next few blogs, we are going to follow what occurred as Mike and Beth prayed that their lives would become vehicles for divine encounters for themselves and others.

A STRANGER IN THE NIGHT

BLOG 45 July 3, 2017 MIRACLES NEVER CEASE

Robert Wise explores the world of Divine intervention from an objective point of view. Can 21st Century people believe that the hand of God touches people in today’s world? Read and you’ll find new insights.

You would like Sean Yost.

The Rev. Sean Yost is a warm, concerned person who is always willing to go the second mile with people in need. As well as pastoring Redeemer Church in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, Sean is completing an M.Div. degree from Gordon Conwell Seminary. Several years ago, Sean was studying in a Bible College in Jacksonville, Florida, and working in a law firm in the afternoon. Often, during the day, he walked to the court house.

On one of these trips, a young man approached him and ask for a handout. Sean replied that he had no money with him but would share what he had. The conversation progressed and the beggar ask if Sean was a Christian. He said that he was. As they walked along toward the court house, Sean noticed that the man’s questions were more profound than what he would have expected from someone living on the street. When Sean asked his name, the man said, “They call me Timothy.”

Finally, Sean told the man that he didn’t have his billfold on him, but if he was willing, after work, Sean would take him to his apartment and then to dinner. They could spend the afternoon talking before Sean took him to a Rescue Mission type boarding house where Sean would pay for his room for a week. Timothy was particularly grateful.

The afternoon progressed quickly and Sean took Timothy to check in at the boarding house. There was only one entrance with a lady sitting behind a desk checking people in and out. The mission kept a strict eye on everyone’s comings and goings. As Timothy walked in, Sean turned around and sat down on the steps.

Several minutes passed and Timothy didn’t come back out. Maybe the lady at the desk was showing him around. Sean waited around ten to fifteen minutes and then decided he should see what caused the delay.

“I’m looking for the man that came in maybe fifteen minutes ago.”

“I’m sorry,” the lady said. “No one’s come in all evening.”

“But I saw him walk in,” Sean maintained.

“There is no other entrance. They have to come by me. I’m sorry no one came in.”

Sean stood there shocked. He had seen Timothy enter but …

As Sean walked away, a biblical verse flashed through his mind. “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.”

At first Sean was stunned, shocked, and then joy flooded over him. The entire experience seemed to suggest that God was directing his steps and approving of him. Sean had experienced an angel while unaware.

 

 

 

MEET LESLIE Part 6

BLOG 43 June 19, 2017 MIRACLES NEVER CEASE!

confederate

Robert Wise explores the world of divine interventions from an objective point of view. Can 21st century people believe the hand of God still touches people today? Read and you’ll find new insights.

A number of important insights can be discovered through previous blogs describing Leslie Draper’s ministry. Let’s take a last look. Five words can define some of our discoveries. This week we’ll examine two of those insights and finish the other three words next week. While much of what Leslie does is unique, anyone can develop similar skills by working down the same path she has followed.

  1. Struggle

Leslie’s childhood was filled with difficulties. There is a dictum in psychology that creativity arises from pain. Suffering enlarges the soul with new openness. Leslie’s difficulties are an important part of what developed her ministry. Divine interventions often occur during hardships and pain.

Everyone has struggles they don’t like to remember, but possibly yours has more value than you realize. Could there be significance in returning to the past and examining how your soul might have been opened with a far a greater potential than you recognized?

A Confederate soldier’s prayer has been on my desk for so long that I no longer remember where it came from, but it presents the possibilities in our struggles. We may have overlooked important insights in many of our previous battles.

I asked for strength that I might achieve; He made me weak that I  might obey.

I asked for health that I might do greater things. I was given grace that I might

do better things.

I asked for riches that I might be happy; I was given poverty that I might be wise.

I asked for power that I might have the praise of men; I was given weakness that

I might feel the need of God.

I asked for all things that I might enjoy life. I was given life that I might enjoy

all things.

I received nothing that I asked for, all that I hope for.

My prayer was answered. Amen.

Take a second look at your life. There may be more there spiritually than you expected. Pain can be the source of gain.

  1. Openness

Even a brief conversation with Leslie leaves the impression that fidelity is an essential part of her existence. She is a spiritually obedient person. Highly instructive for us!

It’s common for people to say, “Oh, I’m quite open –but I wouldn’t do that.” Whatever that is, points to the fact they’re actually not as open as they thought. It’s important to examine our ideals and convictions. Some people never experience the realm of divine happenings because they live inside closed boundaries.

Leslie’s recommendation? Open your heart and eyes to people who are around you. Don’t be afraid to pray with them and for them. We all grow through such encounters. No one knows what their capacities might be except as they reach out to anyone in need.

 

GREETINGS FROM ROME

BLOG 42 June 12, 2017

It’s a little bumpy writing this blog as I am flying over the Alps, returning from Rome. For the past week, I’ve been in audiences with Pope Francis and involved in discussions on Church unity.  Pope Francis has a vision for “unity without uniformity.” He recognizes that the wide diversity of belief and convictions that exist today cannot become one, but at the same time we can still, as he puts it, “learn to walk together.” My relationship with the Pope is an example of this vision because I am a Protestant Archbishop and he is the leader of the Roman Catholic Church. Because of these recent conversations, I am sending this one message through both my Middle East and Miracles channels.

Following the death of my fellow bishop and dear brother Tony Palmer, the Pope asked me to take his place as his Apostolic Representative for Christian Unity. My task is to work to bring unity between  Catholics, Protestant, and Jews. I continue in this mission in addition to writing books and blogs such as this one.

Last week, I was in a discussion with Pope Francis when he made a surprising observation. He noted that we are now in World War III which is unfolding in many  different places at the same time; significantly different from World War II.  I was taken back by his description of worldwide conflicts as a singular war. I ask him how Christians might respond to this conflict and he said, “Pray! Pray without ceasing. Because peace is a gift from God… pray.”

I reflected on the simplicity of this response. Was the matter really this simple? Just pray? And then I remembered an irony, not often examined. When my wife Margueritte was a girl, she attended a parochial school.  The Sisters had the children pray at least once every day for the conversion of the Soviet Union. Surely a nice, but ineffective idea. Nevertheless, Margueritte and her friends prayed fervently everyday for the end of atheistic Communism.

Of course, you know what happened. Almost without fanfare, the Soviet Union collapsed, the Berlin Wall fell, and atheism in Russia was defeated. No one paused to reflect on an unexpected factor. Little children as well as their parents praying without ceasing for an end to the Soviet system and atheism.

Critics will scoff and skeptics will sneer, but the facts remain the facts. Little children prayed for peace and it came. The Pope’s response to my inquiry had significant historic backing. Rather than simplistic, it was to the point in reflecting on the need of the hour.

In these past ten days while I was in Rome, we had terrorist attacks in England and France. Innocent people were killed in this undeclared World War III. Is it not time for us and our churches to pray for peace?

I believe the key phrase is pray without ceasing. I don’t want you to read this blog and then set it aside. My hope is that you decide to utter daily prayers for peace in our time. You will be doing far more than you ever thought possible.

The time to start is this moment.

MEET LESLIE Part 4

BLOG 40 May 15, 2017 MIRACLES NEVER CEASE Robert Wise explores the world of Divine intervention from an objective point of view. Can 21st Century people believe that the hand of God touches people in today’s world? Read and you’ll find new insights.

When Leslie began hearing angels, the idea complicated her sense of stability. Consequently, she went to psychologist Dr. Jonathon Cargill to make sure she was not off the track. After a battery of psychological tests, the psychologist certified her as balanced and normal. The same results were later affirmed. There was nothing wrong with Leslie.

The ministry began to unfold because she wanted to comfort the afflicted. With unusual sensitivity, Leslie helps strugglers find direction and support. She is keenly aware that the ministry is never about her.

Her ministry is fundamentally the restoration of damaged souls. Leslie’s goal is to bring wholeness to anyone in need. Leslie’s ministry is not divination or some form of predicting the future. She understands herself to be operating in a biblical framework as the book of Acts describes (Acts 2:17-18). Leslie believes her primary gift is obedience. The unusual ministry flows from fidelity. Her encounters with angels is an expression of the gifts of the Spirit.    Leslie believes that everyone has a guardian angel. Through prayer and meditation, her experience has been that anyone can get in touch with this resource. She believes we will discover that they have already been at work within us as the still, small voice offering guidance. When a message abruptly floats through our minds and we have no idea where it came from, she believes our guardian angel might be offering guidance.

Such an experience occurred when the Draper family lived in Glen Rose, Texas. She hurried out the door to pick up her daughter at school. As she was backing out of the driveway with her three-year-old daughter in the back seat, she saw money in the driveway and believed it had fallen out of her purse. At that moment an angel showed her a disturbing image of her falling out of the car to pick up the cash. She put the car in park and collected the money, thinking about how little money they had. After she got back in, Leslie saw other money on the grass and opened the door to lean down and get it. The car started to roll.

The inside panel gave way and she tumbled out, falling under the car. What followed only took seconds, but felt like an eternity. Leslie was abruptly upright in the car seat with no idea how she got there. For a moment, she thought maybe she was dead and was in shock. Two hands had grabbed her and put her back in the car. Leslie felt the imprints on her arms and looked for the stranger that saved her. No one was there. Suddenly, she remembered the warning and felt the angel Michael warned her to be careful.

In retrospect, she discovered that angels have the capacity to intervene but do so only if it is for the highest good and honors free will. They never interfere with free will and only offer guidance. 

MEET LESLIE Part 2

BLOG 38 May 1, 2017 MIRACLES NEVER CEASE

Robert Wise explores the world of Divine intervention from an objective point of view. Can 21st Century people believe that the hand of God touches people in today’s world?

Read and you’ll find new insights.

We’ve been exploring individuals who have on-going practices involving numerous divine interventions. Decades ago, I discovered observing such ministries can teach us a great deal. Unfortunately, churches often hurt people. Leslie Draper’s own childhood is an example. Families can also hurt people, leaving behind damaged souls. Her ministry is fundamentally the restoration of such damaged souls. Leslie’s goal is to bring wholeness to anyone in need. She has become a bridge to the wounded.

As Leslie reflects on those earliest years, she now realizes that her angelic experiences were actually preparing her for the future and a ministry. The problems had a purpose, but it took time to understand what this difficult period meant.

When she was in the third grade, the angelic appearances began again (reported in Part I). Leslie wasn’t sure what to think, but her “friends” had returned. When she told her Sunday School teacher about the angels, the teacher responded in a totally unexpected way. “They are demons!” she scolded. If you don’t stop encouraging these appearances, you’ll be damned to Hell!”

Leslie was shocked and retreated in fear. No more talking to the angels in case they really were demons. At age 10, her father was killed in an oilfield accident. The night before he died, the angels came into her bedroom again, but Leslie was apprehensive. This period in her life was highly emotional. When the oil boom broke, the family struggled to survive.

Leslie began to think that God hated her and turned into a biblical “Job” of sorts. As a result, Leslie developed an auto-immune disorder. At age 20, she was diagnosed with multiple Sclerosis with secondary Rheumatoid arthritis and later developed Fibromyalgia. By age 32, Leslie was in deep physical trouble. A chemo-therapy cocktail was prescribed but fortunately, the doctor checked her liver function before she took the fourth dosage. If she ha received, the medication would have destroyed her liver’s capacity and she would have died.

Sitting in her car, Leslie struggled with the idea she might die and who would care for her children. She prayed, “Please God, open the door and I will walk through it.” Immediately, the angels returned and her life changed in that moment. Her illness ended.

Always highly intuitive, she has natural insight. For a period of time, Leslie worked as a Social Worker with the Child Welfare Department in Oklahoma. But that was only a backdrop for what she does today.

Leslie receives angelic messages and passes them on to struggling people. Multitudes have been significantly helped through what she hears the angels telling her to say. A divine intervention indeed!

What do we learn? Our struggles and pain can be the prelude to God’s finest work in our lives.

WHAT DO WE LEARN?

Blog 36 April 17, 2017 MEET SUSAN

Before we start, I need to inform you of a change. Cancel the internet radio show! I had too much trouble in getting an acceptable quality of sound – among other things. So, I turned off the radio. Moreover, this summer, I am beginning a new website that will fascinate you to no end. The time required for these efforts makes the radio broadcast marginal. Stay tuned for future information on the new website.

For several weeks we have been exploring the divine interventions that Susan Conway experienced. They are particularly instructive because Susan is someone you might meet in the grocery story. Remember Susan Conway is a Mom and Real Estate agent. She lives her life like anyone else – except she allowed the power of God to guide her through the difficult trials. She wanted to love her heavenly Father with all her heart, mind and soul.

What do we discover?

  1. Susan was open.

Nothing in her past conditioned her to believe that an encounter with the Virgin Mary was possible. Protestants generally don’t believe in such an experience. However, when Mary appeared as Susan rocked her baby, she embraced the encounter.

The first lesson Susan teaches us is that we must be open. Jesus knocks at the door of our lives, but we’ve got to turn the key and open the door. Our heavenly Father is far more concerned with our openness than whatever we want Him to do

The miraculous walk begins when we say a simple “yes” to Him.

  1. The Lord used a means of communication that was natural for Susan.

Susan grew up believing the Lord speaks through his Word. To her surprise that conviction became more personal than she could ever have expected. While it is important not to wander off the track and try to make the Bible speak in a “hit and miss” fashion, Susan still witnesses that the Holy Spirit speaks through the scripture.

When the Lord chooses to speak to us, He uses means that are often out of the ordinary. The ordinary can become extraordinary. Susan immediately knew when the passages spoke to her. Her advice is, “pay attention in such moments.”

  1. Divine intervention comes in the midst of despair.

In Matthew 5:3, the writer records Jesus first beatitude. “Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.” While this is often used to endorse the value of humility, the meaning is more profound. Jesus was saying that when we have reached the end of our rope and all our capacities have been exhausted, we are at the place where we can most effectively access heaven’s resources. The den of despair is where God does His best work.

When we are certain all hope is exhausted, that’s the best place to find a miracle. Open the door and invite God to come in. He will.

HAPPY EASTER!