• Retah McPherson

The Lord - The Righteous Judge

I only had to minister in Johannesburg on Saturday evening, and that meant that I could spend the entire weekend home with my family - it was wonderful!

On Saturday morning I woke up early with Josh jumping on top of me, “Come on, Mom! It’s time to go cycling on our mountain bikes!” It rained quite a bit the previous evening and I knew that the trails would be covered in mud. I just stared at my Josh when he said this so enthusiastically, because the muddy trail was actually a good thing to him... “Nice! We’ll be full of mud!”

Because I only had to minister that evening I decided to throw caution to the wind and go with him. Tinus and Aldo came with us on their tandem racer, because Aldo can’t cycle on his own yet. This didn’t put Josh off either: “Don’t worry, Mom. They can cycle on another road and meet up with us at the end; then you and I can still go on the mountain-bike trail!” I tried to hide my awkward smile, because I could already see myself covered in mud – but I knew I had to be brave and not let Josh down. While we were still on the tar road I tried to chase our dog Moya back home, and suddenly I couldn’t get my feet out of the clasps of the pedals fast enough and before I knew it I was on the ground – full of scuffmarks and bruises! 

Josh immediately called out to Tinus, “Daddy wait! Mommy fell off the bike!” From the look in his eyes I knew he didn’t know if he had to feel sorry for me or start laughing. “Go ahead and laugh, Zozzie,” I said, “this is what it looks like when someone isn’t used to doing something. But practice makes perfect. That is exactly what Paul tried to teach young Timothy. He said to him, ‘Timothy, I can see that you train your body – and that is good, but that is only of value for this world.... I would rather that you train your spirit to be strong, because that has eternal value.”

Do you not know that in a race all the runners compete, but [only] one receives the prize? So run [your race] that you may lay hold [of the prize] and make it yours.

Now every athlete who goes into training conducts himself temperately and restricts himself in all things. They do it to win a wreath that will soon wither, but we [do it to receive a crown of eternal blessedness] that cannot wither.

Therefore I do not run uncertainly (without definite aim). I do not box like one beating the air and striking without an adversary.

But [like a boxer] I buffet my body [handle it roughly, discipline it by hardships] and subdue it, for fear that after proclaiming to others the Gospel and things pertaining to it, I myself should become unfit [not stand the test, be unapproved and rejected as a counterfeit] (1 Cor.9:24-27).

And this is how we should look at ourselves in the spirit also – one day we stand, and the next day we fall – but with the right training the capacity of our spirit will be enlarged so we can have a greater understanding of the things of the spirit and go deeper into the things of God. The same is true for the flesh... all of us know that without exercise our flesh becomes lazy and weak.

On Saturday night as I was ministering in the church the scuffmarks on my knees were still burning from the morning’s fall, but I was smiling on the inside because I knew at least that I was trained and ready for action in the spirit. At the end of the day that is all that counts!

There was one good thing that came from my fall: I couldn’t go down on my knees this weekend... I had to go down on my face before God, and that’s even better! Josh enjoyed it so much to see me full of mud and Aldo also received good exercise for his lungs (he is still busy recovering from his lung operation in December).

Monday, 11 January, was a date that the McPherson’s will remember forever. For me it was my first day back at work, but it was also the day we took a huge leap forward in the spirit. After we fought the spiritual fight so diligently throughout last year, Aldo still had to undergo a serious lung operation during December, and it still felt to me as if the enemy was on our case. At least by that time we could see and identify his tactics, but it was still there! In the end it got to me a bit, and I felt disturbed by it in my spirit. On our way home from the Cape, Tinus and I were listening to a teaching and testimony on the i-pod from someone who fought a similar three year spiritual battle. Their battle came to an end when they took a very specific and significant step in the spirit – a petition before God. As we listened to the testimony of their breakthrough, Tinus and I continually glanced at each other, recognizing that this was important stuff! It fell so sweetly on our ears.

In the meantime Aldo wrote, “Mom, those things you were listening to – you have to go and do it! God is not only your Abba Father, He is also your Judge!” We stood amazed when Aldo wrote this letter that evening when we arrived home, because he couldn’t hear what was said on the i-pod. It was confirmation of what we had to do!

On Monday morning I went into the office early to sort out the most important things, but I couldn’t wait to get back home again... because today was going to be the day that I took our petition to the Courtroom of our Righteous Judge! Up and till then we did everything we possibly knew how to do to get victory. Jesus told Peter about a sifting process (Luke 22:31) and I believed that even that was now over and done with. My family and I had laid down everything – everything – in order to receive what God has in store for us! To do this there is a price involved – it asks your life, and that you lay down everything that is precious to you.

First I shared communion and cleansed myself – because it is only through the blood of Jesus that we receive righteousness before God. I realized that if I become serious with God, God becomes serious with me. With my whole heart I sought Him – wholeheartedly is the word the Bible uses to describe this longing for God. If you pray wholeheartedly we will receive (Matt. 4:6). If you are hungry and thirsty – you will be filled. If you crave it and seek it, you will receive the streams of living water of God, if you seek it wholeheartedly! Well, I was at that point where I craved and starved for God, because I knew the fight was on and only God, and God alone, was the one who could step in and defeat our enemy. He is my God, my Abba Father – and also my Judge.

Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’

“For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’”

And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:1-8).

I wrote down my petitions and realized all too well that I couldn’t just zip in and out of the Courtroom as I pleased, because not only will God judge my enemies, but I will also come to stand before the righteous Judge. As Psalm 24 says: “Who shall go up into the mountain of the Lord? Or who shall stand in His Holy Place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who has not lifted himself up to falsehood or to what is false, nor sworn deceitfully.”

The moment I pulled my tallit (prayer shawl) over my head I realized where I was. I immediately knew that it was only because of the power of the blood that I could be there and none of my ‘good works’ or anything coming from myself could keep me standing before His throne. Jesus is my righteousness, and only by the blood of the Lamb do I stand righteous before the Father. The fear of God came upon me (the understanding of who He really is!), and I was also aware of the enemy who stood ready to accuse me. Jesus was my advocate, and it was a humbling, humbling experience.

I went to my Father (who was also the Judge), and I explained every petition to Him and asked Him to judge my case. I realized that I couldn’t go before the Judge if my hands weren’t clean or if the enemy still had a legal right to accuse me – because God will always give a righteous judgement, and that means I also stood transparent before Him. After 45 minutes on my face before Him, I saw in the spirit how the hammer was brought down and the case was closed.

My eyes were red from all my crying – I hadn’t cried like that in a long time. My tears flowed because of the anointing of the Lord that was upon me, the fire of God that fell, the fear of God I experienced, and the rhema that came into my heart again that God was the Almighty God.

At this point, I just want to say that all victory and glory and honour belongs to God. He and He alone is the one we should look to. Please don’t look to me or to any other person for your victory. Like it says in 2 Cor. 4:7: "For, we possess this precious treasure [the divine Light of the Gospel] in [frail, human] vessels of earth, that the grandeur and exceeding greatness of the power may be shown to be from God and not from ourselves." Let us look to God for everything we need, for all glory and victory belongs to Him!

I stood up with swollen eyes and went to sit outside with Tinus and look at the sun setting over Hartebeespoort. The peace of God enveloped us. For a moment I caught a glimpse of something in the spirit, like a swimming pool... a legion of angels that were woven and stretched over our house. “Wow!” I wondered to myself, “am I seeing this correctly?”

Tinus and I spoke about my experience, but I still didn’t want to say anything to the children just as yet. We sat down for dinner that night and everyone was quiet. I wondered if I should tell them about my courtroom experience or whether I should wait for Aldo to reveal something through his letters. Aldo just kept on staring at me throughout dinner, and Josh (who normally talks non-stop) was also particularly quiet. Even Tinus and I didn’t say much, because there was a strange new anointing of total peace and love that kept on flowing over us. It was supernatural. I continually felt the anointing run up and down over my arms and legs. And so we kept on eating quietly and drinking from this Godly peace that was being poured out over us.

Aldo’s next letters started with: “Where were you this afternoon, Mom? Because your hands are still full of fire.” Josh, who in the past six years never slept in his own room before, didn’t even care about his mattress that was already made up for him in front of our bed – he went straight to his room and slept there, and has done so ever since. The next morning Aldo wrote, “Wisdom told me everything, Mom!” (You can go and read his letters posted on the 18th of January 2011). Tinus and I didn’t tell the kids about anything that happened - only after Aldo started writing about it did I explain to him that I went to the courtroom of God. Yes, and Aldo even wrote in detail about the hammer that God brought down. This courtroom experience taught me another very important lesson: that God also requires responsibility from us. God’s grace is always over us so abundantly, but our wrong choices or wilful sin gives the enemy a legal right to attack us and to torment us – and that is why God asks of us to walk a road of sanctification and holiness, because God cannot go back on His word. He will always uphold His law, and He counts His Word as the highest authority.

We are still enjoying this peace, and now Aldo has started writing how Wisdom is leading us into emotional healing and healing of the inner child. I will also post some of those letters for you to read. (See Aldo’s letters of 18 January 2011.) Initially it was difficult for me when I realized we had come to the next stage of our healing process, but I also knew that it will serve a purpose and that I have to share it with the world – because there are so many people who need healing of the inner child. But this can only be done through complete deliverance.

The twelve year old Aldo couldn’t speak after the accident and those wounds that he suffered then had to be completely healed. And after that we had to deal with all the things that Aldo suffered and missed out on in his teenage years.... he had to place it all on the altar, so that he could realize that it was also part of his sacrifice. And so, step by step, the small 12-year old Aldo, took hands with the Aldo he is today so that God could heal wherever the hurts were still hiding, and make him whole. Since understanding this truth, I have received a new task from Wisdom everyday how to deal with the things that happened to Aldo since the accident up till now.

I have come to the conclusion that if you can’t look your pain in the eyes, forgive those who need to be forgiven, and then give all your pain and hurt to Jesus – that healing won’t be able to flow. God wants to heal your spirit, soul and body – but it will be step by step.  First the root of the problem has to be taken out, then the demonic influences will flee, and then emotional and physical healing will take place. And now I bless every part of Aldo’s being, and I can see and testify how blessing also brings healing. The enemy can’t even stand where the blessing of God’s love is. In my own life I can see how I lay down everything to make sure that those doors are closed to the enemy – because I understand the spiritual realm so much better.

For the last couple of weeks, Aldo kept on writing: “We have rented – but now we are property.” At first I didn’t understand it at all – until last night when he explained it to me in his letter: “Wisdom says when we live out the world’s kingdom we are only busy renting, but when we live out God’s kingdom we are property.”

As a family we are now enjoying the peace that transcends all understanding. It cost us a very expensive price, and that is something God asks of all of us – our lives!

Through my travels I have learned that people struggle to move into God’s supernatural dimension because they don’t hunger and thirst after God enough. It is like spoiled children who eat candy the whole day and are not disciplined. When the healthy food comes they are stuffed full of the world’s junk that makes them feel good about themselves but doesn’t have any real value. And this junk they are busy eating, will kill them slowly if they don’t make a change. People today are so full of the things of the world and it keeps them so busy – it consumes them! Even the schools, and children and their children’s activities are the source of self-satisfaction for so many parents as well as children. This is how the enemy slowly reels them in to no longer seek after God wholeheartedly, but seeking the things of the world. 

God’s plans for your children are already in place. Their destiny is in His hands – nothing you can do can add to that, only what you lay down can help. God is asking all of us this year: Are you willing to starve yourself from the lusts of this world, so that you can start becoming hungry for the supernatural, life-changing Word of God - so that you can start walking in the spirit and not be caught up in the flesh? For all of us this means one thing: surrender. My family and I have decided to live our lives in total surrender to God, and in our house we help each other do it. 

When you allow ‘life’ to become more important to you than God, it will become increasingly difficult to pray wholeheartedly – where you are totally focussed on what you are praying and not on the things around you. Sometimes it is so difficult for Tinus and me to explain to other people how the spirit realm works, because we see so clearly in Aldo’s life and through the things that Wisdom writes, that even thoughts become ‘arrows’ of the enemy. We need to bring our thoughts under God’s authority. Don’t think I don’t also struggle with this – sometimes I stand with my back against a door in the sprit just to keep it guarded – because I also fight my own heart and fleshly desires that need to die to self.

When God becomes as much of a requirement as food, water, sleep, air, and self – we will find Him. God is Spirit, and this year anyone who is looking for God will have to seek Him in spirit and truth, because if you seek Him in the flesh you will stay caught up in works. It is actually so simplistic to walk in the spirit. Anything that becomes too complicated is not of God – because He told us that we need to receive the Kingdom of God as children!

Jeremiah 33:3 is where the Bible describes praying with your whole heart: God says: Call (fall down, cry out to Me with all you have – your whole heart) to Me, and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things which thou know not.

Yes, He will show you things that were especially prepared just for you, that no one els has ever seen or heard. He will show you things that have never entered into the heart of anyone before you – because he created you and you alone for your special unique destiny. All we need to do is to simply call out to Him – love him enough to give up your life for Him here on earth, and to live for him with your whole heart.

I am going to take a step of faith this week and start filming 5 minute video clips for the Web-site each week. It is a big step of faith, because I don’t have a studio or professional help. Aldo can’t wait for this because he also wants to share things as the Holy Spirit leads us, even if he can only start with a greeting and grow from there. We set up the video camera in the study of our home for now. We will do our first video today, but I also know that taping these video’s are a small step in the whole process, because then it still needs to be put on the web-site, and the necessary programs and infrastructure have to be put in place, but that is what faith does – it acts!

We are so thankful for people who have helped the ministry over the years. Jules Beeton and her team are going to help us again this year with the Israel tour, as well as the reservations and all the planning. We appreciate it so much because we are still only a ministry and can’t employ people for each of our projects yet. The salaries we pay for all of us here at the ministry come from the CD’s and books we sell, and nothing is taken out of the ministry account, and that is why we appreciate it so much when people with willing hearts and who understand what it means to invest in God’s kingdom come alongside us. I believe that is the way that God wants His body to start functioning – all to His glory and His glory alone. Thank you also to everyone who keeps on investing and sowing into the Hebrew book. That is truly where the heart of this ministry lies – to help the Jewish people to see their Messiah through His love that is so tangible in the books that we have translated into Hebrew.

Josh is doing so well back at school, and Aldo has started with his course from Ellel ministries, and in-between he is still writing letters for his “Wisdom for teens” book. He will also start ministering with me at the Spirit Schools and the other places where Holy Spirit leads him.

To everybody who prays for our ministry, I want to say thank you so very much – may God provide for your every need.

Go – step out in faith and watch how God will be in every step you take.

Love

Retah and family.

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