A New Day On The Back Road Pastures green, a new dawns Grazing sheep, stand still and stare, Spring lambs skip to feed. Thumping mother stood still staring. Tails wag. Derserving. God's radiant sun brightens warm Sun brightens their world The son lightenss mine Jesus heals my brokeness and restores my weary soul. Easter 2016 has come and gone, a new day. He arose to show us that way In HIM alone we have the victory. Nature demonstrates His glory The bible teaches His story Resurection, New Life, New Day. Only through Jesus Christ, The only way. Facing Adversity Adversity is a normal part of the Christian life. It is often referred to as the 'valley' experience. In times of adversity or if we find ourselves 'in the valley of tears' we must not forget God is there with us. He promises never to leave or forsake us. Through good times and bad. In the valley as well as on the mountain top. He is faithful. God encourages us through scriptures and teaches us to lean on him at all times. Proverbs 3: 5 ­ 7 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD and depart from evil. In Philippians 4: 6,7 we are instructed to be anxious for nothing. As weak human beings we struggle to have faith. God is always faithful. His word is true and He knows all things. He is sovereign over all and in full control all the time. He teaches us to pray, seek, believe and trust in Him. Only by faith can we learn to lean on God and trust Him to deliever us from whatever situation we are facing. We all face adversity and while living in this fallen world, we will continue to face challenges. Reading, studying and memorising scriptures greatly helps in such times. The bible is packed with encouraging promises. The bible teaches that God chastens those He loves. Adversity is a way of removing that which does not belong in a Christian life. Purification. Job is an example in the O. T. of one who had much adversity. He remained faithful and trusted God no matter what. 'The LORD giveth and the LORD taketh away. BLESSED be the name of the LORD' Job said and he had lost everything except his wife who was not encouraging him. We do not understand the purpose for suffering, during times of trial but we know God promises to deliver us and we know God 'works all things together for good to those who love Him'. Paul wrote that God gave him a 'thorn in the flesh to buffet him' lest he become prideful. Without the chastening of the LORD we are likely to slither back into our old ways and sinful habits. God is doing a great work in our lives by cleansing us and preparing us for His heavenly kingdom. CREATE IN ME A CLEAN HEART O GOD AND RENEW A RIGHT SPIRIT WITHIN ME. We are to give thanks in all circumstances. James 1 2­4 Psalms 91 Praise be to his Holy name Psalms 27 Give thanks to the LORD Noreen Gallagher Brennan 8 April 2016 xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

A message from our sister Noreen Gallagher Brennan in The USA.

September 2015                        Noreen Gallagher Brennan            


On this 10 day September 2015, I am blessed. It is early morning just after 5.00 am and I am encouraged. My next door neighbour starts his van and heads off to work. This gets my feet to the floor. Today is the day the Lord has made, let's rejoice and be glad. The bible teaches that he who does not work does not eat. God sends many things each day to remind us of His magnificent glory.  Sun rise, a butterfly, a squirrel upside down, enjoying breakfast from a bird feeder. Green trees turned gold. In psalm 19 we see a picture of His magnificent creation. We live in a fallen world, filled with daily challenges and hurting people. We often allow people and circumstances to steal our joy. Happiness depends on what happens but joy is deeper. Joy does not depend on circumstances but on our security in Jesus. Weeping may last for a night but joy comes in the morning. It is our responsibility as brothers and sisters in the Lord to edify, encourage and support one another.  As true believers in Jesus Christ we know we do not fight against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers of the air. The enemy wants to steal our joy and works endlessly to make sure Christians feel defeated. We are in this spiritual battle together, we must recognise our own soldiers and join them prepared daily to defeat the enemy. Let us not speak against our brothers and sisters but encourage them, especially when they are weak or struggling with temptation. I pray for God to help me in this area. You can too. We are victories, regardless what it looks like. Put on the armour and take a stand when you have done all else you can do. Stand firm. One of the greatest and most effective weapons in spiritual warfare is prayer. Lord teach us to pray the disciples asked the Lord. He did. Matthew 8. Let us come with a repentant heart and pray to the Lord, King of Kings that His will be done in all things, accepting it be done in His way and in His time. Surrender it all to Him in faith believing that all works together for good to those who are called. God has a plan for each life. Prayer overcomes despair Why troubled be you and me? He directs each step He alone holds the key  In Him our hope shall be. John 8:31 teaches 'Then said Jesus to the Jews which believed on him if ye continue in my word then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.' There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ. Romans 8:1. The enemy uses people, even other believer to accuse, condemn and blame. God is love, in Him there is acceptance. God will grant whatever we ask in Jesus name. John 11:40. Believe and see the glory of God. He is a God of miracles. Where two or three are gathered in my name and ask anything in the name of Jesus it will be done. Throughout the book of John we are encouraged to ask and receive. In times of difficulty and trouble we can be deceived into thinking differently. Many believers do not tap into the truth of God's word and as a result live defeated lives. We play the negative record of events or possible negative outcomes over in our minds rather than memorizing scriptures. We are instructed to take every thought captive. Do I? I have learned during my most difficult times that memorizing scriptures and using them (as Jesus did) will help us through. The word is the sword we use to fight enemy. Mighty to slain. We are commanded to STUDY God's word. Equipped with pen and note pad we can spend time in God's word. I find it useful to pray that God will open my eyes to see and my heart to know what the scriptures are saying to me on a daily basis. Studying God's word enables us to take a stand in times of trouble and to help others when trouble comes. By soaking in God's word and applying it daily we become enriched and filled with wisdom and light. We can then represent the light of Christ in a dark world and give a reason for the joy and hope that is within us.

                        May the peace of the risen Christ be yours and His word be your HOPE xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx    


 In an attempt to capture and share God's blessings, I take this opportunity to write from my prayer journal - : I want to share a glimpse of the blessings we have received recently. I give God thanks and pray that He will continuously guide us in the way we must go. Proverbs 3;5 TRUST IN THE LORD WITH ALL THINE HEART; AND LEAN NOT UNTO THINE OWN UNDERSTANDING. KJV The Lord richly blesses us each and every day. We are tempted to take this for granted. Blessings like food, clothing, family, faith, fellowship and shelter. We often take our physical and mental health for granted too. It is only when our circumstances change and the 'normal' flow of events come to a halt, we sit up and take notice. It is then we call out to God. God is good all the time, I pray we learn to give him thanks all the time, in all circumstances; even when things don't appear favourable. 'And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose.' Romans 8:28 The book of Job is an example of a man who experienced hardship. He was an upright and righteous man. In James 1:2 we learn that we are to 'Count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations'. KJV It is very difficult to accept this and it is only through spiritual maturity we can come to understand. God uses trials and temptations to 'perfect' his people. His will not mine, be done. We must learn to understand - God allows us to experience difficulties. No pain is wasted. He uses all for his glory and honour. Since becoming a 'born again' (John 3:3) believer in 2008 up to the beginning of this year, Michael and I experienced many trials. I am now learning to trust and lean on God. I continue to read, study and meditate in God's Word so that I can handle what life throws at us in a way that is pleasing to God. By doing this I can learn to shift the focus – to take responsibility for my part and let God do his part. I am learning to surrender the situation to God and accept He is in control of the outcome - He is able even if I am not. Painful and impossible as a situation appears I pray for the ability to let go and let God. This requires faith. I thank God for brothers and sisters in Christ who support and encourage during these difficult times. Acknowledging this truth gives me freedom to be strong in the face of adversity. We must understand the truth of God's word and know we have the victory and we are more than conquerors. Do we really believe this? Our tests reveal what we truly believe. Each test challenges us in a different way. It is a refining process. That is why we need continuous renewing of the mind. I now understand and accept that challenge and adversity are opportunities for growth. (This is easy to say and do until I find myself in the middle of a crisis ). Then it is much more difficult! In the natural it is easy to feel defeated. 'God is the same, yesterday, today and forever.' Our circumstances change but God doesn't. I find if I nurture my spiritual appetite each day, By meditating on the Word and internalising it I have a 'bank' of resources in store for the tough times when I really need to 'draw' from it. Adversity grows Patience, Patience grows Trust, Trust grows Faith. The bible teaches in Hebrews 11:6 - Without Faith it is impossible to please God. The bible teaches us in Philippians 4;6 Be careful for nothing: but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. KJV Internalising this truth and accepting God is powerful, frees us to live through any and all difficult situations. He loves us and wants the very best for us always. We are victorious in all circumstances no matter how it appears in the natural. He is sovereign and in control of all things. This is true – whether we believe it or not. We have free will to accept or reject this. I know that with God all things are possible. Even if it looks impossible in the natural – we can believe for a favourable outcome. Once we accept His will not mine, be done and in God's time. Clinging to these spiritual truths gives us the ammunition we need to fight the spiritual battles we face daily. The bible teaches we cannot please God and man. A spiritual battle for souls – cannot be fought in the flesh but spiritually with prayer and God's armour. Satan & The World versus God and The Word. We know already the war is won. When God be for me who can be against me? This past month we have experienced numerous blessings. I thank God for peace, favour and health. Sometimes we fail to acknowledge blessings and see them as mere coincidences. I want to acknowledge and share with you - how God's blessings can take on a simple form. We prayed this year about our trip to USA. We obtained a six month visa with little effort. We made our first visit to Florida in 2008 and desired to return to visit. From there we made our first visit to Branson Missouri. That is where we surrendered our lives to the Lord. JESUS became our Lord and Saviour! I never cease to thank God and know that was His plan not mine. On this trip we received favour when we realised we had the use of a unit in the Stay Sky Suites, Orlando completely free. Two weeks completely free of charge! There we enjoyed peace, blessings, lovely food and friendship. Next, we book a flight to Springfield Missouri. We booked the wrong date by mistake. The normal penalty is $75 per person plus the difference in flight price. This could have been an expensive mistake. We travelled to Sanford airport so we could explain our situation. We figured we might qualify for a compassion vote. There we were greeted and escorted by a 'chief' in the Allegiant airlines company. He treated us like royalty (then we are!) and had our flight changed (completely free of charge) within five minutes. Add to this - the privilege of being among the first to travel on and enjoy the use of the 'new sun rail' transport system. This is a brand new service between Orlando central station and Sanford airport just opened for the first time – completely free for trial period – saving a taxi ride - approximately $120. Thanks to the Lord we experienced favour in Florida and felt blessed. We experienced the peace that surpasses understanding. One day while having refreshments in Mc Donalds (the biggest one in the world), we had more favour. We received free coupons and 'a word' from one of the promotion ladies. Obviously - A Christian. She told me to read Proverbs 3:5 and a chapter each day for 31 days. 'This will direct you' she assured. Pointing to Michael she said, 'God put you two together for a reason.' Laughing and light-hearted we went on our merry way. I believe that was a 'word' from the Lord. Before understanding how God works in our lives, I considered such things a coincidences. Now I know they are Divine appointments and blessings. Thank you Lord. In Branson – one day whilst standing in line at Michaels Art shop, I was purchasing some art material. Just as I was about to pay for my purchase I was comparing prices and considering value for money. To my astonishment a lady I never spoke to or even met before said. 'Here use this coupon!' This coupon gave me 40% discount. Now that is God's favour! I boldly shouted Hallelujah - I give Him thanks. This weekend I had the opportunity to travel to Kansas city. I spent time in fellowship and had a fun experience. My very good friend Don emailed me this morning telling me to check out David Hocking. He has just started a new study on the book of Job. From this study I am learning that it rains on the just and the unjust. JOB WAS A RIGHTEOUS MAN AND HE EXPERIENCED TRIALS AND BLESSINGS. I feel blessed and I continue to pray and prepare spiritually for the trials to come. Thanks be to God. All praise and glory be to HIM. I hope my sharing God's blessings in our life will be a blessing in yours. Blessings! Much love your sister in Christ Noreen :)


     "Noreen's Story"                                                                  

My story In spring 2008, Michael and I were on vacation in the USA. We had visited Branson previously and decided to return there to ‘check it out’. We were eager to see how the real Americans lived. This was the beginning of a life altering experience. One afternoon whilst relaxing in the mid day sun on Sunset Inn Road, Merriam Woods a gentleman approached us. His name was Don Reese. He was a neighbour and was working in his yard. Only God would understand why this man deemed it necessary to abandon his job and cross the street partially clothed to talk with two strangers. Don a ’believer’ since 1992 knew the importance of God’s work. He was acting in obedience. He fully understood his responsibility and what Christians are called to do – to be fisher’s of men. Go out into all the world and spread the gospel of Jesus Christ. Matthew 4:19 “And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men”. Don talked to us about God and about accepting Jesus as our Lord and Saviour. I recall becoming defensive and telling him we were ‘good’ Catholics. I explained to Don that I prayed and recited a rosary every day. “I have been to Lough Derg every year for the past thirty years” I insisted. Trying to explain to him how active I’d been for over forty years to secure a place in heaven - Don explained none of this was any use. He taught us the first truth that day. You cannot enter the kingdom of God unless you are born again. John 3: 3 “Verily, verily I say unto thee, except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God” ¬- I was bewildered and needed to know more. Don invited us to his home where we met his lovely wife Patty; we were introduced to hot dogs and to Christ in a very meaningful way. I now understand God was using Don to share the gospel with Michael and myself. I was lost and in darkness and I was not even aware. I was filled to overflowing with self righteousness, religiosity and good works. The bible teaches this is a stench in the nostrils of our Lord. Isaiah 1;13 - 23 and 65; 1. Following this Michael and I answered an alter call during a church service in the Jim Stafford Theatre Branson Missouri one Sunday morning. This was the beginning of a very exciting journey. That Divine appointment - meeting Don and Patty was an absolute blessing. We took every opportunity in the following weeks to spend time with them and Don used every chance to share God’s word with us. My understanding about the bible up until that time was that it was a book for priests and I never deemed it necessary to read it. Now I understand and fully accept it is a blueprint for life. I use it daily as my guide to help me live a fulfilled and peace filled life. It helps me from day to day with every step guiding me and giving me the wisdom I need. Recently I realised my friend had introduced me to the bible back in 1991. We were studying for a diploma in counselling and psychotherapy at that time. She had given me a copy of the bible as a gift. It stood in the bookshelf surrounded with many self-help books for all those years – unopened. I was too busy trying to find a way to handle life and its challenges; I attended numerous courses and classes and had no time to read the bible. I got involved in community tutoring. Self help was my most widely shared subject as well as smoking cessation and beauty lessons. I practiced beauty therapy for a time. I dappled in Angel cards and practiced meditation. I trained in reflexology and considered training in Reiki. Little did I realise all beauty comes from within and from knowing Jesus Christ on a personal level. Jesus is the answer, to stress management and a wholesome healthy life. Adjusting to Christianity was a major challenge on a personal level and for us as a couple. At first I thought - this is great! Now I understand the truth about Christ. Life will be so easy. Plain sailing……..I was in for a shock. Michael and I experienced one challenge after another. We broke up numerous times. I spent all my spare time searching the Word, listening to tapes, CD’s and reading books. My self help books were very soon to be replaced with ‘God help’ books. At that time I used Joyce Meyer’s material and anything else I could find as I could relate to it – so much so that it made me laugh. Her material and teaching helped me understand the gospel of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. This was the spiritual milk I needed as a baby Christian. Very soon I matured and needed the ‘meat’ of the word. I was now a hungry Christian. I took every opportunity to listen to and watch relevant material. The more I did this – the more I desired it. I thank God for the time and opportunity to do this. As well as reading God’s word daily I believe it is essential to read and listen to relevant scriptural teaching. We live in a fallen world – we are always at risk from false teaching and deception. This morning I read my journal from 15 November 2012… it reads as follows: As I reflect on the changes in my life since September 2007, I am feeling blessed. Then I smoked; NOW I DO NOT Then I drank: NOW I DO NOT Then I lived in sin; NOW I AM MARRIED Then my body ached; NOW I AM HEALTHY AND FIT Then I was lost; NOW I AM SAVED Then I was tormented with anxiety and worldly concern; NOW I AM FREE. The Word teaches – Those who the Lord sets free are free indeed. John 8:36 If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. Then I did not understand the importance of living in and keeping God’s word. Now I am blessed to have that privilege daily. I babbled in vain repetition – NOW I CAN TALK WITH MY HEAVENLY FATHER in a meaningful way because through Christ I have a relationship with God. Then I didn’t understand the necessity for and the power of forgiveness, acceptance and particularly surrendering to God’s will. Now I understand the meaning of Joy, Happiness, Peace and so much more. Lord I am so grateful – Thank You, and I love you. Even after accepting Jesus as my Lord and Saviour it took some time to understand the TRUTH and to appreciate what it means to be SAVED. I often felt challenged and sometimes still do. I now understand that I am in constant spiritual warfare. We are warned about this in God’s Word. Ephesians 6: 12 “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places”. I praise God I can now arise early in the morning to spend time with the Lord in prayer and in His Word. I am very much aware that we can get off track. I pray that with God’s help and through the power of the Holy Spirit I can overcome in all situations. I accept we are victorious in Christ. He has won the battle and overcame death, hell and the grave. I rest in that assurance. “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3: 16). He said “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one cometh unto the Father, but by me” (14: 6). “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved” (Acts 16: 31). Thank you LORD – In you I trust and live and breathe and have my being. Thank you for loving me and helping me in all areas of my life; I thank you for your beautiful creation and for the many blessings I enjoy. I am eternally grateful. Help me to become more like Jesus and to always remember the sacrifice you made at Calvary.

   Noreen Gallagher 


When I say, “I am a Christian” I’m not shouting, “I’ve been saved!” I’m whispering, “I get lost sometimes That’s why I chose this way” When I say, “I am a Christian” I don’t speak with human pride I’m confessing that I stumble - needing God to be my guide When I say, “I am a Christian” I’m not trying to be strong I’m professing that I’m weak and pray for strength to carry on When I say, “I am a Christian” I’m not bragging of success I’m admitting that I’ve failed and cannot ever pay the debt When I say, “I am a Christian” I don’t think I know it all I submit to my confusion asking humbly to be taught When I say, “I am a Christian” I’m not claiming to be perfect My flaws are far too visible but God believes I’m worth it When I say, “I am a Christian” I still feel the sting of pain I have my share of heartache which is why I seek God’s name When I say, “I am a Christian” I do not wish to judge I have no authority I only know I’m loved



UNDERSTANDING THE HOLY SPIRIT Recently I spent time studying the Holy Spirit, and how he affects the life of humankind. I found this so encouraging and interesting that I want to share it with my brothers and sisters in Christ. I trust you will be encouraged and enlightened. The first book in the bible teaches in the beginning there was a world without form or shape. It was void. The Spirit of the Lord was ‘brooding’ over the earth and spoke the world into existence. The creative intelligence of God the Father formulated the heavens and the earth – the universe. In order to understand the Holy Trinity, we must understand the Father, the Son, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Jesus was the expression of God in human form. There has never been a time when God did not exist. The Holy Spirit is the ‘power house’ of the God head. It is imperative to understand when we die, our spirit goes on forever. Because humans are made in the image and likeness of God we too have a spirit, a soul and these are housed in a body. The Spirit is the heart of man which gives him a desire to connect with his Creator. This is what makes humans unique. Animals have limited intelligence; they have no desire to worship. People everywhere share this need to seek something greater than him. Our time on earth is as a vapour, we must seriously consider our spiritual health not just our physical health. The function of the Holy Spirit is to convict the sinner of sin and to bring holiness into the life of man. The function of the Son is to die for mankind and to make intercession for him before the throne of God. He is to take what is of the earth and relate it to God. The Holy Spirit is symbolized by wind and fire. Fire denotes purification and holiness (all things purged by fire becomes free from impurity) and wind - the breath of life. On the day of Pentecost the Holy Spirit came in a rushing mighty wind and tongues of fire. The Spirit of God takes the things of Jesus and reveals it to man. The Spirit of truth reveals the way of Jesus, the nature of Jesus the need for salvation (convicting man of his sin) and then revealing the power of God in the life of the believer. He enters into us when we are born again as an intercessor. He prays through us according to the will of God. We seek to flow in His power. He directs and motivates us providing we seek, listen and be obedient to him. Before Jesus departed earth He promised to send a ‘Comforter’ not a comforter as we know it but one with strength. The function of the Comforter is to be alongside the believer to encourage, empower and give strength. The world cannot receive him the bible explains - but believers can because he is in the heart of the believer. Before we accept Jesus as Lord and Saviour the function of the Holy Spirit is to convict man helping him to understand he is lost – not born again. John 3; 3. The Holy Spirit reveals the things of God to man. He helps man to understand his need for salvation. The spirit searches the deepest part of man and communicates the deep things of God to him. The Holy Spirit relates the spoken word to the deepest need in all men - everywhere. In 1 Corinthians 15; 45 we see the very first man Adam became a living soul – earthy. The ‘second Adam’ Jesus came from Heaven and became a life giving spirit. Just as we have born the image of Adam which is earthy so too we will bear the spirit of the heavenly. Flesh and blood cannot inherit the things of God nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. Jesus imparted life and breath to us. Eye has not seen nor ear heard the things God has prepared for those that love him. 1 Corinthians 2; 9. The natural man cannot accept the Spiritual things of God; it is foolishness to him. They are spiritually discerned. 1 Corinthians 2;14 The Holy Spirit is the link between the spiritual nature of God and the perishable nature of the world especially man who was created in His image. Only through the Holy Spirit can man attain unto God and God to man. Before he becomes saved man is motivated by the flesh. We who surrender our lives to Jesus receive the Holy Spirit. It is the Holy Spirit who makes the invisible world understandable to us. The word of God becomes alive through the Spirit. The heart of God becomes alive through the Spirit. The majesty of Christ becomes alive through the Spirit. It is his function to reveal to us the things of God. Romans 8; 14 For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God. The spirit fights against the flesh in order to sanctify a believer. Only three things belong in heaven. Faith Hope and Love and the greatest is love. The natural instinct of man is fleshy. Immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, anger, envy, drunkard ness and disputes - these are evidences of the natural self. It is a sinful desire of man to be independent of God. The soul (mental and emotional part of humankind) reigns to its own power. When a person becomes ‘born again’ this means that a person answers the call of God and the Holy Spirit comes to link his spirit to Jesus Christ. The dominant place in a person’s life then becomes the spirit and not the soul. The fruit of the spirit - Galatians 5; 27 (Love, joy, patience, peace, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control) become evident as a person matures and grows in Christ. The heart of God becomes alive through the Spirit. The will of God is constantly communicated through the Spirit. Romans 8; 14 explains that we don’t know how to pray as we ought but the spirit helps our weakness. And God works all things together for good to those who love Him. By Noreen Gallagher




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