[shoulders] SHOULDER TO SHOULDER #19 ---- 5/24/98

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From: lifeunlimited@... (Robert A Tolliver)
Date: Sun, 24 May 1998 21:51:52 -0500
Standing Shoulder To Shoulder in the Trenches,
Encouraging One Another as we "Fight the Good Fight"



Title:  VICTORY OVER THE FLESH

Dear Co-laborer:

Needless to say, I got numerous responses to last week's letter.  For
those of you who wrote, thanks for your comments ---- both corrective,
additive, and affirmative.

Here's an interesting note about the very issue we covered.  Steve and
Margo are making a ministry change, and here's what they are facingas
they leave the church he pastored for several years ---- a church that
was just about to close when he agreed to come and serve there..  Anybody
else ever go through this?

"What a poignant and timely message.  I especially appreciated you
sharing what Jim Hylton said about dead men ---- they don't strike back
when they are attacked or offended.  

"There's a lot of blaming going on at our church.  Now that Steve is
leaving, the people are blaming him for the lack of success in this
church (numbers wise).  It's tough to hold your tongue.  But I keep
thinking about that scripture, 'He was oppressed and He was afflicted,
yet He did not open His mouth.  Like a lamb led to the slaughter, and a
sheep silent before his shearers, so He did not open his mouth.'  

"Pray that Steve and I would humbly keep our mouths shut (especially me).
 Dead people don't have a reputation.  I need to stop trying to preserve
mine/ours.

"Margo"

Here's another note: . . .

Wendee made an excellent observation concerning the list of deeds of the
flesh which I noted ---- namely, "sensuality", which is how it is listed
in NASB, the translation I used.  Here's what she said:

"Dear Bob,

"This was only the 2nd issue of Shoulders I have received and I am highly
impressed.  It is excellent!  However, I was concerned about one word you
used in your summary of Galatians 5:18-21 below:

>"'+ The deeds of the flesh are evident ---- immorality, impurity,
**sensuality**, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts
of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness,
carousing,' etc. (Gal 5:18-21).

"I don't know which translation you are using but in NIV the word is
debauchery and in King James it is lasciviousness (vs. sensuality). In my
dictionary both words are defined as "extreme indulgence in sensuality"
or
"wanton lust." That is quite a different picture than the word
"Sensuality" by itself paints. I believe sensuality is an important part
of a healthy *marriage*, and not what this passage refers to. I just
didn't want your readers to get the wrong idea."

I don't have space to include my responses, but I believe both letters
indicate a genuine desire to understand Biblical truth and found
Spiritual power to overcome the works of the flesh.

(Wendee, one thing I didn't mention in my note to you is that in the
Greek dictionary I checked, it seems basically to mean a passionate and
driving desire to live wantonly by the senses out of control for fleshly
fulfillment.)



You may have noticed that last week I failed to use one of the most
important passages in the Bible in how to deal with the flesh.  I noticed
it, too ---- exactly seven minutes after I clicked the button to send the
letter.  I had intended it to be the real "punch line".  I guess the Lord
knew it needed to stand alone as the subject of a separate letter..

So ---- guess what today's subject is?  Exactly right ---- Gal 5:16 (and
following).  VICTORY OVER THE FLESH.

In doing so, I want to cover two basic areas:
1.  The issue of our Nature/s
2.  How To Have Victory over the Flesh



1.  HOW MANY NATURES?

  1)  TWO NATURES?

Years ago there was a wonderful booklet written by one of Canada's great
preachers, Oswald Smith, pastor of the famed People's Church in Toronto. 
The title was *The Believer's Two Natures*.  While it certainly was not
the "first word" on the subject (nor will it be the "last word" I assure
you), it became an instant success, because people found within its
covers a way to explain the ongoing conflict of good and evil inside
themselves.  

The basic assumption was that when we were born again we were impregnated
with a new nature, the nature of Christ, co-inhabiting our bodies with
our old nature, the flesh, still alive and kicking, but ultimately
defeated.  Therefore, we could and should expect there to be those
temptations and struggles, and we should expect to fail at times, but
should, finally, be encouraged to know there was the glorious possibility
of frequent victory.

Oh!  So that explains it!  What a relief! 

I still remember the refreshing that went over my soul when I realized
there was a "black dog and a white dog" inside me constantly fighting for
supremacy.  (You remember the story well.)

On the other hand, that explanation also left me with some puzzling
questions.  For example . . . .

Question One:

  A.  If, according to II Corinthians 5:17, I have become a "New
Creation", and  "OLD things have PASSED AWAY", and  "ALL things have
become NEW", why is the "old nature" or the "flesh" still there, and
where did it come from?  

Maybe there was there some sort of malfunction or failure on God's part
---- or maybe on mine.

Maybe, at least in that case, the Bible doesn't really mean what it says.

Maybe there has been some "new" added to the "old" so that now there is a
mixture.  Maybe the "old hasn't really passed away ---- yet, but will
later, and the "new" hasn't really come ---- yet, but will in the future.

Question Two:

  B.  If, as Paul so vociferously declares, the "flesh" has been
crucified and is dead (Rom 6:6; Gal 2:20), and we have "died to sin" (Rom
6:11), then why do I still find myself struggling with the attitudes and
works of the "flesh" or my old "self life"?  Does that mean that I am so
weak as a believer that dead stuff can master me, even when I'm at my
spiritual best?

Maybe I've backslidden.

Or ---- perish the thought! ---- maybe I'm not really even saved!

My friend, this is an ongoing issue, yet unresolved, in the lives of many
Christians ---- knowing that the victory has been won over sin, hell,
death, the law, the world, and the flesh, why do we still struggle with
it all, and what do we do to secure and maintain victory?

Now, I know, friend, the theological explanations of
Justification-Sanctification-Glorification, the Past-Present-Future
stuff,  and so on.  But frankly, just between you and me, I'm adding
these questions to my list; and, when I get to heaven, ---- if I EVER
take a break from worshiping the Lord Jesus Christ, ---- I'm going to ask
Him.  

By then, of course, it's a moot question, so I guess I'll just not write
it down.  Besides ---- who wants to interrupt such a fantastic praise
service to ask such an irrelevant and stupid question there?  Especially
since "we shall know as we are known".

  2)  MAYBE ONE NATURE?

Back in the 1980's David Needham from Multnomah Bible College wrote an
excellent book entitled *Birthright*.  He offers a differing viewpoint
from Oswald Smith.  He insists that the old nature really IS crucified,
dead, and buried, and that it really isn't us doing all that stuff ----
the works of the flesh ---- but it is simply the left-over residue of the
old nature which is now dead.

He uses the following illustration (described in my words).

There was a factory that produced nerve gas for the purpose of death and
the motive of profit.  One day a new corporation came along and, paying a
very high price, bought the factory from which to now produce oxygen for
the purpose of life and the motive of service.

So, there was a complete re-tooling of the plant and a re-training of all
the personnel who chose to remain on as employees.  While the sale was
instant,  It took quite some time for the re-tooling; but the work was
ultimately completed, and fresh, pure, life-giving oxygen began to flow
through the pipes that had once, long ago, produced an agent of death and
destruction.

Everything went wonderfully for some time.  Everyone was so excited about
the new lease on life, and worked especially hard to help fulfill the new
purpose and produce the perfect new product.

Then one day the company got a frantic phone call from one of the
hospitals to whom they provided tanks of oxygen.  The hospital
administrator was furious.  They had found NERVE GAS in one of the oxygen
tanks!  "You guys are in a heap of trouble!  Heads are going to fly!  Law
suits are on the way!"

Needless to say, the factory owner was deeply grieved.  The
administrative personnel began searching through their warehouses filled
with tanks, and, to their utter shock, discovered several other tanks
marked "Oxygen" but filled with nerve gas, ready to be shipped out to
healing centers around the country.

"How could it have happened?  How could we, who have changed our entire
operation from nerve gas to oxygen, from death to life, ever do such a
thing?  We know better!  How could we have slipped up so?"

(A more significant question should be, "how could we who have died to
sin still live in it?" (Romans 6:2b))

The thought was almost unbearable.  (It still should be, my friend!)

The investigation changed from trying to explain the Consequences to
locating the Causes of the problem and make appropriate Corrections. 
They began their search, building by building, department by department,
room by room.

Finally, to their utter shock, they discovered, far away  on a back lot,
a small unimpressive little building with a small handful of engineers
and scientists who were doing what they had been trained to do long years
ago ---- develop and process formulas that produced nerve gas!

When asked how they could do such a thing, they responded, "What do you
mean?  We're doing what we've always done ---- what we were taught and
trained to do."

"New owners?"  We've never heard about new owners!"

"Oxygen?  You've got to be kidding!  We've never heard anything about
producing oxygen!"

"Frankly, oxygen to give life sounds exciting to us, but we don't know
how.  You'll have to re-train us; we still think "nerve gas".  We'll have
to be taught new things; our minds and habits will have to be purged from
the old formulas and re-programmed with the new.  

"But you must remember that this is all we've ever done.  We're more than
excited about the possibilities, but, in fact, we feel almost like we
need to have brand new minds ---- and least have our minds made over as
new, or 'renewed'."

Once the problem had been identified, it was resolved, and from that day
on, the changing process began as their minds were filled with new
concepts, truths, and techniques.  Those scientists and engineers never
produced nerve gas again, and spent the rest of their years of employment
there enthusiastically producing oxygen.

But it didn't happen overnight.  And, to this day, it remains an ongoing
process of teaching and training the principles of oxygen and providing
the latest insight on the subject for every employee of the company.



2.  VICTORY OVER THE FLESH:  HOW???

That's the big question.  All of us know we are not to walk in the flesh.
 It doesn't take a great deal of knowledge and maturity for even the
youngest Christian to know he is to live a life consistent with the
nature, character, message, and purpose of Jesus.

The only thing that stands in his way is ---- the flesh.  The "Self"
life.  The Carnal mind.

I first learned of such a concept back in southern Missouri in the mid
1960's when, as I have referred to before, a mighty move of God took
place that shook an entire community ---- for nearly three years
straight.  I still remember books such as Roy Hession's *Calvary Road*,
L.E. Maxwell's *Born Crucified*, Watchman Nee's *Normal Christian Life*,
and others.

And, the driving desire of my heart has for years been to live in total
and absolute victory over all the flesh that remains in me, no matter
whether it's the remaining old nature or just its residue.  

My desire is not to know Which it is, but to know Victory over whatever
it is!  Daily!

In that pilgrimage, I have learned some lessons that were life-changing
for me.  They can basically be centered in the following "categories":
  1)  Walking in the Spirit
  2)  The Wealth of the Spirit
  3)  The Work of the Spirit



1)   WALKING IN THE SPIRIT:

I cannot fully express the shock that went through my system when I
finally saw the utter simplicity of Gal 5:16.  I mean, I had seen it
before ---- but there came a day when I really SAW it.

For years I had read that passage, and it came out in my mind as,  "Don't
fulfill the lust of the flesh, and you will walk in the Spirit."  In
other words, "If you want to walk in the Spirit, Stop fulfilling the
desires of the flesh, you knuckle head!"

You'd be amazed at how many others have done the same thing ---- maybe
even you. 

That is obviously Not what it says, but that is what our carnal minds
think it says, and that is most certainly what the great deceiver and
father of all lies wants us to think it says.   One of the highly
successful tactics of the enemy is to get our minds to reverse the order
in which God speaks.

You see, we still have not learned the lesson of the great old hymn,
*Stand Up, Stand Up For Jesus* where it says, "The arm of flesh will fail
you!  You dare not trust your own!"

"Walk in the Spirit!"  And the results will be, "you will not carry out
the desire of the flesh!"

So ---- where does our concentration need to be ---- on the flesh, or on
the Spirit?  

Obviously, on the Holy Spirit.

Walk in the Spirit!

Well, then, just what does that mean?

Basically, I believe it means that we walk under the control of the Holy
Spirit.  It isn't some mystical ethereal floating-just-above-the-ground
experience, but rather, a practical, down-to-earth, day-by-day,
commitment to yield to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

So ---- how do I do that?

STEP BY STEP!

I believe walking in the Spirit requires understanding two keys: 
Learning what it means to walk and how to do it, and learning to trust in
the ministry of the Holy Spirit.

  A,  Walk!  

You have heard it said, "a journey begins with the first step", and that
is certainly true for the believer.  

 Quite simply, we walk one step at a time ---- one foot after the other; 
never two feet at a time (that's jumping!), but just one at a time.

Learning begins with the very first step and continues throughout.
Walking is not standing, and it is not running ---- it is in between the
two.  There are times for standing ---- especially during times of
battle.  There are times for running ---- especially in times of a race
or in delivering emergency messages.

The time for walking is when we need victory over the flesh.
   A)  We used to walk according to the course of the world, but we
	 don't anymore (Eph 2:2).
   B)  We used to walk according to the ways of the prince of the 
	powers of the air, but we don't anymore (Eph 2:2).
   C)   We used to work according to the lusts of our flesh, but 
	we are not to do that anymore (Eph 2:3).
   D)   We used to walk indulging the desires of the flesh and 
	the mind, but we are not to do that anymore (Eph 2:3).
   E)  We used to be by nature children of wrath, but we are no longer 
	that way (Eph 2:3).
   F)   We are to walk in a manner worthy of our calling (Eph 4:1).
   G)  We are to walk with humility (Eph 4:2).
   H)  We are to walk with gentleness (Eph 4:2).
    I)   We are to walk with patience (Eph 4:2).
   J)   We are to walk in a love that forbears (Eph 4:2).
   K)  We are to walk so as to preserve unity of the Spirit in 
	the bond of peace (Eph 4:3).
   L)  We are to never walk in the futility of our own 
	darkened minds (Eph 4:17).
   M)  We are to never walk in the darkness of human 
	understanding (Eph 4:18).
   N)  We are to never walk in ignorance caused by 
	hard hearts (Eph 4:18).
   O)  We are to walk in love (Eph 5:1).
   P)  We are to walk in such a way as to commit no sins of 
	the tongue (Eph 5:4-5).
   Q)  We are to walk as children of light ---- because 
	we are (Eph 5:8).
   R)  We are to walk trying to learn what pleases God (Eph 5:10).
   S)  We are to walk as wise and not as unwise (Eph 5:15)
   T)  We are to walk in a way that makes good use of 
	our time (Eph 5:16).
   U)  We are to walk filled with the Spirit (Eph 5:18).
   V)  We are to walk with one another in praise and 
	ministry (Eph 5:19-20). 
   W)  We are to walk in submission to each other (Eph 5:21).
      
That should be enough for us to work on for awhile.

Beginning to walk gets us started; continuing to walk keeps us going.  
Falling down is part of the walking process. Staying down is to end the
walking.

  B.  In The Spirit!  

We have often made the individual who is "walking in the Spirit" to be
some ethereal, mystical, super-spiritual type of person sniffing some
sort of heavenly methane gas and displaying a glazed look in his eyes and
a funny grin on hisr face, and, with a syrup-coated voice constantly
saying, "well, glory to God!  Praise Jesus!  Hallelujah!"  (Precious
phrases that deserve more than that.)

Nothing is further from the truth.  It should be one of the most
practical, down-to-earth, daily conditions of our lives ---- not some
mystical "higher level" status, or some legalistic performance exercise.

Walking in the Spirit is done the same way salvation is received ---- by
faith. 

"We walk by faith, and not by sight."  (II Cor 5:7)

 "As you, therefore, have received the Lord Jesus, 
	so walk ye in Him!" (Col 2:6)

It's a simple matter of Trust, Submission, and Obedience.

  A)  Trust ---- Can God be trusted to keep His Word?  Can Jesus be
trusted to remain in my heart?  Can the Holy Spirit be trusted to do His
work?  Can I be trusted to get out of His way?

You see, friend, our capacity to live in victory is determined to a large
extent by our genuine confidence that God did what needed to be done, and
can be relied upon to maintain what He did ---- just for us!  If we don't
believe that (for whatever of a hundred reasons), then we will continue
struggling.

And, our capacity to live in victory is also determined by just how badly
we want free from the desires of the flesh, and that we really believe
that is genuinely what we Do want.  And, sometimes, we have to deal with
the fact that we want both.

Sometimes our struggle is in believing God; other times it is in
believing ourselves.

  B)  Submission ---- That's a cruncher!  You see, every step I take is
based on a decision.  My feet are My feet; my choices are My choices; my
will is My will.  So, if I'm Not walking in the Spirit it is because I
refuse to submit.  It certainly wasn't the Lord Jesus who recommended I
walk in the flesh!

If I am taking a walk with Jo Ann out in the country, I  take the walk
because I decided to, I go the direction I do because I made the choice
to turn at that point in time, and ---- I keep going that way because I
chose to do so.  If I made a wrong turn, it was by my choice, whether
intentional or simply because I didn't pay attention.  

If Jo Ann, on the other hand,  happened to want to go another direction,
then I faced another decision ---- whether to go my way or her way.

So it is with walking in the Spirit.  Every moment of every day I am in
the decision making process of choosing to go my way or Jesus' way. 

My father taught it so simply:  "If I wake up in the morning, and the
first thing I do is to submit to the Lordship of Jesus Christand the
moment-by-moment leadership of the Holy Spirit, then I can assume, as
long as I remain submitted, that He will be faithful to see that I walk
in the Spirit throughout that day.  So ---- the first thing to do every
day is to report for duty ---- and submit to the Commanding Officer."

 Which brings us to the issue of obedience.

  C)  Obedience ---- The only way I could go Jo Ann's way is to Choose to
do so.  That makes her very happy.

The only way I can walk in the Spirit, is to substantiate my trust in and
submission to the Holy Spirit by walking in Obedience.  That makes God
very happy.

The rest just comes ---- super-naturally.

The results are astounding.  I will Not fulfil the lusts of the flesh!

It's not that I Must Not fulfill the lusts of the flesh!  It's not that I
Should Not fulfill the lusts of the flesh.  It's not that I Dare Not
fulfill the lusts of the flesh.  It's simply that I CANNOT fulfill the
lusts of the flesh ---- IF ---- I am walking in the Spirit!  

The emphasis remains on walking in the Spirit.  If I am walking in the
Spirit, it is an utter impossibility to yield to the desires of the
flesh.

Friend, it's a given!  It's an automatic!

IF ----and again I say IF ---- I CHOOSE ---- CHOOSE! ---- to walk in the
Spirit by Trust, Submission, and Obedience, then I can be absolutely
bedrock certain that the Holy Spirit is neither going to Direct me to or
Allow me to fulfill the desires of the flesh!  The desires may still
surface, but I Will Not Yield!

It is totally contrary to His nature, His purpose, and His ability!

The only possible way I can fulfil the works of the flesh is to Choose
NOT to walk in the control of the Holy Spirit.  And ---- it IS Indeed a
Choice I make!  And ---- it is thoroughly catastrophic!



2)  THE WEALTH OF THE SPIRIT:

I'm not even going to delve into this fathomless area of "the riches we
have in Christ Jesus".  The entire book of Ephesians is filled with
scores of the "spiritual blessings in the heavenlies".  

All I can say to you is that whatever you need in order to victoriously
live the Christian life, walk faithfully and consistently, and daily in
the control of the Holy Spirit ---- it is all there for you ---- and much
more!

Take time to sit down with a note pad and pen and begin jotting down some
of the hundreds of ways the Holy Spirit provides a wealth of resources
for victorious living.




3)   THE WORK OF THE SPIRIT:

Finally, we cannot in any way, shape, or form, live up to the
expectations of, and the inheritance we have in, Christ apart from the
active work of the Holy Spirit.  We know He is our "guide", our
"teacher", our "umpire", etc.  I will not even begin to elaborate on all
the marvelous ways in which the Holy Spirit works in us and with us ----
baptizing us into the Body of Christ, sealing us for eternity, giving
spiritual gifts for service, providing power, bearing fruit in the
likeness of our Savior. . . .

Rather, let me focus on one very special work in which He willingly
engages that will probably do more to enable us to have consistent
victory over the flesh than just about anything else I can think of.

My scripture reference is Romans 12:2.  After Paul, in the last part of
chapter 11,  has poured out his heart cry for Israel in its great need,
he erupts like an impatient and uncontainable geyser ---- "Oh, the depth
of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!  How unsearchable
are His judgements and unfathomable His ways!"  
Then, after offering an already-answered rhetorical question about who
among us knows the mind of Christ, He caps it all off with a profound
statement ---- "For From Him and Through Him and To Him are all things! 
To Him be the glory forever!  Amen!  I urge you therefore, brethren, by
the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, .
. ." (Romans 11:36--12:1).

And, then, as if throwing a spear with the power of a thousand warriors,
he says, 

"And ---- Do NOT Be....CONFORMED . . . To THIS WORLD!....BUT....

 B-E   T-R-A-N-S-F-O-R-M-E-D....!"    

TRANSFORMED!

Be what you have Become!  You have Become a New Creation (II Cor 5:17)
---- so BE ONE!

You and I would certainly say, "That's what I've wanted all my Christian
life!  How, Lord?  How?"

I'm thrilled to say that Paul also told us "How".  (Here's a sermon
outline for you.)  I see three simple elements in being transformed so
thoroughly over time that we can have consistent victory over the desires
of flesh --- the self life.

  A.  My Presentation:  "Present your bodies a living sacrifice . . . " 
MY responsibility!

  B.  Christ's Transformation:  "Be transformed by the Renewing of 
	Your Mind"    CHRIST'S Responsibility!

  C.  God's Revelation:  "That you may prove what the will of
	God is . . . "  GOD"S Responsibility!

It seems to me that the key is not only presenting ourselves to the
uncontested Lordship of Jesus Christ, but also taking whatever time,
cost, and effort necessary for the re-programming ---- the re-training
---- the renewing of our minds.

Romans 8:4 says, "That the righteous requirements of the law might be
fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to
the Spirit. (6) For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set
on the Spirit is life and peace."

What does "set" mean?  How about "based on", "built on", "resting on",
"focused on" "surrendered to"?

How, then, do we bring our minds to be  "set" on the Spirit?

Through their "Renewing".

No matter what else you do in your Christian life to overcome the
clutches, the desires, and the works of the flesh, if you are not
renewing your mind through prayer, reading the Word, ruminating it and
meditating on it constantly, you will never break the cycles of carnality
formed there before you became a believer.  

If you are not finding out what God is saying about something, and then
agreeing whole-heartedly with Him, you will continue to question God's
standards, fear His workings, doubt His Word, and run from His will.

I believe this is part of what Paul was addressing to the Corinthian
church in I Corinthians 1 when he accused them of being believers
thinking like and living like unbelievers ---- being "carnal" in their
thinking, and subsequently in their conduct.

The Bible tells us we "have the mind of Christ", and that we are to "let
this mind, which was also in Christ Jesus, be in You."

I declare to you, dear friend, we will never have victory over the flesh
without there being a radical, no-turning-back change in our attitudes
about the things of Christ and the nature of the flesh and all its
workings.  

Until we stop compartmentalizing and categorizing sins, justifying our
actions by our "saved by grace" and  "I'm not under the law, I'm under
grace" slogans, and sloughing off our casual attitudes toward the flesh
by saying "everyone does it", we will NEVER have true freedom in Christ,
and we will never amount to a hill of beans when it comes to influencing
unbelievers to abandon their lives to Jesus Christ and follow Him fully.

If we truly knew how deeply in grieves our Heavenly Father to see us
living in the flesh, it would thoroughly and overwhelmingly break our
hearts before Him.

In fact, maybe that's what we need ---- and maybe that's where we need to
start.



FINALLY:

Victory over the flesh can be found simply by immersing ourselves in the
Walk, the Wealth, and the Work of the Holy Spirit.

So, if you are one of us, as I have been, who took it upon ourselves to
assume personal responsibility for attaining such victory, save your
energy!  It can't be done.  At least not in our energy.

The only way I know to have consistent victory over the fleshand its
desires and works  is to . . .
1)  Acknowledge the task is beyond my abilities and resources.
2)  Agree that such work was included in the finished work of Christ.
3)  Accept the finished work of Christ in totality and not just
piece-meal ---- including what He did to the flesh.
4)  Submit myself to the uncontested Lordship of Jesus ---- in action as
well as in attitude.
5)  Give my mind over to the Holy Spirit to be renewed and re-programmed
through the Word of God.

Does your heart beat with mine ---- to know daily victory over the flesh
and all its cravings?  Or, better yet, hunger to walk in the control of
the Holy Spirit every breathing moment?

If it does, let's covenant together to Trust Him, Submit to Him, Obey
Him, and give our minds over to an ongoing renovation process.

I don't know about you, but Nerve Gas is not my thing, I want no part of
ingesting it, producing it, or delivering it to others!  It's pure oxygen
for me, all the way!

What will the people in your fellowship breathe this week?



CONCLUDING REQUEST:

Next Sunday and the two following I will write my letter to you from
Crikvenica, Croatia, on the shores of the Adriatic Sea, where Jo Ann and
I are leading a team of 16 in ministering to refugees from the
Croatian/Bosnian War (40 of them) and 53 children and their sponsors who
were victims of the Chernobyl nuclear accident twelve years ago.  The
refugees suffer from deep emotional wounds, continued homelessness,  and
a spirit of hopelessness.  The children, who appear healthy, carry within
their thin frail bodies the contamination of heavy metals which have
permeated the entire land and food chain where they live, and
subsequently problems like thyroid difficulties, kidney failure, enlarged
hearts, leukemia, etc.  Time does NOT heal all wounds, but it does tend
to make us forget about these dear people.

We will be doing other ministry things as well, such as speaking in
churches, visiting refugee camps, construction work, etc.

Pray that God will provide the remaining $2,000.00 to cover the cost of
this ministry (He has already faithfully provided some $50,000), that God
will provide the compassion and strength and endurance we need to
minister, and that the Holy Spirit will prepare the hearts of all who
receive our love from believers in America.

We leave for Kansas City this Tuesday, leave Kansas City Thursday flying
to Vienna Austria, and then after a day of sight seeing for our team,
arrive at the Life Center on Sunday evening.

And ---- think about going with us on one of our upcoming trips.  Our
next one is in early Fall of this year.

I count it a blessing to share with you each week.  I know not every
letter will benefit you personally, but be reminded that it will someone.
 Pray for me as I try to hear the voice of the Spirit in choosing what to
write about.

In Christ's Bond,

Bob Tolliver
Copyright May, 1998.  All rights reserved.

Life Unlimited Ministries
lifeunlimited@...
Ph: 417-275-4854
Fax: 417-275-4855