Tuesday, July 25, 2017

SHE WANTED TO BE PREGNANT

 By Angeline M Duran Santiago

1 Samuel 1

 Broken. Empty. Angry. Hurt.
No, to use the word hurt is like referring to I got a paper cut.
I am referring to the hurt deep inside your soul, that the moment you begin to recognize it, identify it and allow it to come out, this deep pain inside of you feels like you will die if God doesn't see you through your great need.

I read about Hannah.
She was barren, in other words, empty. She had tried but her body, her insides had been unable to conceive. Her one request. She wanted to be pregnant.
She wanted to be pregnant with life.

This deep desire within her caused her to be the scorn and the target of mockery and abuse.
It was acceptable back then to have two wives, or a wife and a concubine. Here she was not only having to share a husband, but now she was taunted, laughed at and made to feel less than a woman. She was forced to look upon the children borne to the other wife, maybe even help care for them.

She wanted so much to be pregnant with life that she cried out to God. Even the priest thought something was not right with her because her grief was so deep and so great. She prayed this petition in the silence of whispers cries, "Lord, place life inside of me, and if you do, I will give this life back to you." I paraphrased for a reason. I believe you and I are just like Hannah. Not in the sense that we are looking to get pregnant. But, our heart's cry is,"Lord, I long for your life inside of me! I'm tired of feeling empty, without a purpose, abandoned and seen as someone who can not give birth to what I should."





Lost dreams. Unaccomplished goals. Abandoned agendas. Like abortions in our lives, those moments of experiencing defeat or brokenness have left us waiting to "feel that life kick and move inside of us" but years pass and all we witness is the growth of others. Empty. Even angry.

I understand you because I too have many times asked the Lord what happened to the spoken word into my life when I was younger, just starting in the ways of the Lord. I also had so many dreams and so many visions of things to happen and they've watered away into almost forgotten memories. Yet, as I read all about Hannah today, all I could sense was the Lord saying that He also has a moment for my Samuel to come forth in my life. God has that Samuel moment for your life as well. Just as the Lord honored and blessed Hannah at the right time, He has that for us as well.

God waits but it is not that He delays and we're forsaken. In the Lord's timing, we seem to struggle but He is at peace because perfection and His plan all fall into place when it is His will and his time.  Hannah cried for months, weeks, even years and God was holding back not because she was not worthy but because the purpose and mission for Samuel was for a specific season. If she would have him sooner, then God's time frame didn't fit in her timing. It had to be all about God's time and how God was going to use Samuel. You see, the Lord placed "LIFE" inside of Hannah and she in turn returned this precious gift to be used of the Lord, even from such a childish state, surrendered to the Lord completely. And this brought her joy. Hannah had her answer from heaven. Hannah had received LIFE inside of her. She was no longer scorned or looked down upon because God has answered her and worked in her once dead body by using her to bring forth a life that would live to serve the Lord's great and mighty plan.

Lord, I cry out to you tonight because I too, like Hannah, want to experience new life in my life. I know there are things hidden in me that are yet to come to pass but I have never known or learned how to make them come to pass. Help me Lord to wait upon you and trust in your perfect schedule. Your calendar and your appointments are beyond my understanding. So, give me the wisdom to know that you take care of the deadness in my heart and all the hurts that seem to continue to flourish even when I am reminded of your great love and care for me. 




Lord, I cry out in whispers, let the broken heart beat for you. Let my shattered dreams fall into your hands and heal every broken aspiration. Lord, deliver me from wanting to do more and never seeming to see what I know you are able to do. I know you have a Samuel moment in my life. I know you have poured out your LIFE into my life. Jesus is that promise of LIFE in my life. Breathe into me and remove the cobwebs. Remove the hurts of yesterday that so easily come when angered or betrayed. Let me keep my eyes on you and you alone.

Hannah wanted to be pregnant with a child to bring you glory and honor. Lord, I want to be full of life to live each moment for you. I want to be full of Your Spirit and your anointing to give you all that you have asked of me and all you expect of me. I want to live to glorify and worship you all of my days. Have your way in the darkness of the womb of my life, in Jesus Name. Amen.

SHE WANTED TO BE PREGNANT

 By Angeline M Duran Santiago

1 Samuel 1

Broken. Empty. Angry. Hurt.
No, to use the word hurt is like referring to I got a paper cut.
I am referring to the hurt deep inside your soul, that the moment you begin to recognize it, identify it and allow it to come out, this deep pain inside of you feels like you will die if God doesn't see you through your great need.

I read about Hannah.
She was barren, in other words, empty. She had tried but her body, her insides had been unable to conceive. Her one request. She wanted to be pregnant.
She wanted to be pregnant with life.

This deep desire within her caused her to be the scorn and the target of mockery and abuse.
It was acceptable back then to have two wives, or a wife and a concubine. Here she was not only having to share a husband, but now she was taunted, laughed at and made to feel less than a woman. She was forced to look upon the children borne to the other wife, maybe even help care for them.

She wanted so much to be pregnant with life that she cried out to God. Even the priest thought something was not right with her because her grief was so deep and so great. She prayed this petition in the silence of whispers cries, "Lord, place life inside of me, and if you do, I will give this life back to you." I paraphrased for a reason. I believe you and I are just like Hannah. Not in the sense that we are looking to get pregnant. But, our heart's cry is,"Lord, I long for your life inside of me! I'm tired of feeling empty, without a purpose, abandoned and seen as someone who can not give birth to what I should."



Lost dreams. Unaccomplished goals. Abandoned agendas. Like abortions in our lives, those moments of experiencing defeat or brokenness have left us waiting to "feel that life kick and move inside of us" but years pass and all we witness is the growth of others. Empty. Even angry.

I understand you because I too have many times asked the Lord what happened to the spoken word into my life when I was younger, just starting in the ways of the Lord. I also had so many dreams and so many visions of things to happen and they've watered away into almost forgotten memories. Yet, as I read all about Hannah today, all I could sense was the Lord saying that He also has a moment for my Samuel to come forth in my life. God has that Samuel moment for your life as well. Just as the Lord honored and blessed Hannah at the right time, He has that for us as well.

God waits but it is not that He delays and we're forsaken. In the Lord's timing, we seem to struggle but He is at peace because perfection and His plan all fall into place when it is His will and his time.  Hannah cried for months, weeks, even years and God was holding back not because she was not worthy but because the purpose and mission for Samuel was for a specific season. If she would have him sooner, then God's time frame didn't fit in her timing. It had to be all about God's time and how God was going to use Samuel. You see, the Lord placed "LIFE" inside of Hannah and she in turn returned this precious gift to be used of the Lord, even from such a childish state, surrendered to the Lord completely. And this brought her joy. Hannah had her answer from heaven. Hannah had received LIFE inside of her. She was no longer scorned or looked down upon because God has answered her and worked in her once dead body by using her to bring forth a life that would live to serve the Lord's great and mighty plan.

Lord, I cry out to you tonight because I too, like Hannah, want to experience new life in my life. I know there are things hidden in me that are yet to come to pass but I have never known or learned how to make them come to pass. Help me Lord to wait upon you and trust in your perfect schedule. Your calendar and your appointments are beyond my understanding. So, give me the wisdom to know that you take care of the deadness in my heart and all the hurts that seem to continue to flourish even when I am reminded of your great love and care for me. 



Lord, I cry out in whispers, let the broken heart beat for you. Let my shattered dreams fall into your hands and heal every broken aspiration. Lord, deliver me from wanting to do more and never seeming to see what I know you are able to do. I know you have a Samuel moment in my life. I know you have poured out your LIFE into my life. Jesus is that promise of LIFE in my life. Breathe into me and remove the cobwebs. Remove the hurts of yesterday that so easily come when angered or betrayed. Let me keep my eyes on you and you alone.

Hannah wanted to be pregnant with a child to bring you glory and honor. Lord, I want to be full of life to live each moment for you. I want to be full of Your Spirit and your anointing to give you all that you have asked of me and all you expect of me. I want to live to glorify and worship you all of my days. Have your way in the darkness of the womb of my life, in Jesus Name. Amen.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

DARKNESS PLANS, GOD STILL REIGNS

By Angeline M Duran Santiago

Horrendous activities are planned against families daily. The mobs of darkness unleash their darkest conceived plans against everyone, especially those who call themselves, the so called believers and followers of Christ. Every vile and destructive imagination is unleashed against families and against individuals who have only begun to learn their ABC's and colors. Deep anger and hatred as blood that keeps the hosts of darkness moving forward, invade communities, cities and fearlessly invade homes. They use the heart and mind that becomes available to their desires and re-education of mankind to turn around once Godly values and make them the unspeakable curse word among nations. Demonic activity rises and moves through individuals that have surrendered their hearts and their will to speak out against the lifestyle that represented things Godly, holy and beautiful to twist those very ideas and make them a mockery, a ghastly ideology and a way that is challenged in the very high courts that once believed in God we trust.

You and I are not exempt. There is no label on our foreheads that says, "Able to Escape" because although we believe in a mighty God and although we do our best to live each day honoring the ideas, principles and values poured out from God's word into our hearts, we live very aware that we wrestle on a daily basis with the unseen that rises up against God's children to abolish the creation that has been made worthy of Salvation. We are part of that group that tirelessly experiences the oncoming onslaught of darkness and many times we are left on the ground, unable to stand for a moment, and so many times at the very brink of giving up the fight. The fight. Don't give up the fight. For although our fight is against principalities in the heavenly realm, it is in that realm that God's power and presence is manifested to once more cover us and keep us through the worst of attacks.



How exactly do we know we are being assaulted? Look around you and if you are alive you will realize there is a plan set forth in motion to bring you and your family, together with your community to complete ruin. I've seen this not occasionally, but on a regular basis in my own life.  My own children are constantly bombarded with horrible situations. Sickness is constantly invading our home. Our jobs went through some extreme changes the past four years. Our loss has been great financially and we've gone from being in a somewhat comfortable place to knowing what it is to make do with the basics and be content with God's provision on a daily basis, just enough for each day. My marriage has gone through the battlefield and many times I was sure the end was here for us. Arrow after arrow has been launched to destroy, detour and completely annihilate my children and us as individuals and as a family. 

The attack is real. But, I want you to know that although this rising up of darkness against the Chosen of God is never ending, so is God's grace and power for His children, never ending. His love and His Power is limitless. There is no end to His presence being available to those who believe and call out to the Lord. God is faithful to give us never ending victory against a defeated foes who get their joy by thrashing us and shooting out against us to see us fall. Yet, the Lord in his mercy has taken the time to leave us words of comfort, words of encouragement and instructions to help us know how to fight and how to stand against the wiles of the enemy.

My friend, our help comes from the Lord. Suicide is a voice that speaks into your ears and tells you that your worth and purpose is over. It tells you that there's no reason to live. Divorce comes and stands in your bedroom and tells you that it's better to stop fighting for your marriage and that someone else will make you happy. Sickness comes in to torment your body, your child's body and at times you say, "Lord, if you're healer, where are you and why aren't you healing my child?" We question God and all the while God is not ignoring us, He is saying, Hush my child. Be still. I am at work in this matter. You are not alone. Look at me. Watch me fight for you. I am with you.

Even in the very house of the Lord we experience the struggle for there are many that even in roles of leadership seem more the messengers of darkness than the very people in our lives that have never confessed Christ. We see their fake smiles, and it's easy to detect the presence in them that butts heads with what is in us. We see their lies, their jealousy and their plan to stand in our way of serving the Lord. But, even in this, God reminds us once more that even when our very own family in the Lord is that source of pain and anger, God wants us to see it as the devil at work to being destruction not only in us but in them as well. 



God wants us to be wise and turn to Him. The Lord wants to show us not to focus on the negative but to place our eyes on Him and Him alone so that we remember to give Him glory through all our struggles and all our hard times. God alone gets the glory so that we understand it is not the strength of our arm, our words, how loud we get or how smart we think we are, but it is Jehovah in us to help you experience God's deliverance and God's presence.

Yes, darkness rises against us. Light is greater for God is light and the darkness flees at it's spark. True, evil seems to reign in many parts of our lives and our communities but God's life is greater and if we pursue it, we will experience deliverance and joy! Do not be overcome with discouragement but hold on to the Lord and see that greater is He that is in You than He who is in the world.

If you need prayer or just someone to listen, feel free to share. When we get together to pray for one another and believe God for the pulling down of strongholds and calling upon the Powerful name of Jesus Christ, great things happen.


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Tuesday, May 9, 2017

I ALMOST FAINTED



Image result for I thought I would have fainted if not for the Lord


Psalm 27:13-14New King James Version (NKJV)

13 I would have lost heart, unless I had believed
That I would see the goodness of the Lord
In the land of the living.
14 Wait on the Lord;
Be of good courage,
And He shall strengthen your heart;
Wait, I say, on the Lord!

Lately it has seemed as if so many different kinds of situations have plopped themselves on my lap. Just for a moment in time, there have been moments where the weight of those issues have fallen so heavy upon my chest. I've believed the way out of this situation and being a person of faith in the Lord, I've immediately confessed God being stronger and more powerful than the current waves crashing upon my environment. Still, in those very first moments, I join myself to verse 13 and can say that I also would have lost heart, I would have fainted and I would have given up, unless I had believed that through all the drama and the tumult coming against me, that I would most definitely see and experience the goodness of the Lord. I would experience it in the land of the living, meaning, God's goodness would provide for my lost heart while I am still in the process of going through. I would have fallen apart and gone crazy many, many times- literally, had my heart not learnt to wait, wait, wait and wait on the Lord.

It's hard to wait. But the outcome of waiting is the reward that comes when our prayers are answered and God does the unexpected. No, we were expecting, but I mean, when God does what only an amazing and sovereign God can do what we needed. It is worth all the great because then we rejoice and celebrate God's goodness. Our faith grows as we see God's goodness while we wait. We wait and we pray. We pray and we wait. If you see me you are going to say, "That's one crazy lady!" I pray wherever I am. I'm at a point in my life where I am not afraid to let people know I'm on a journey to being closer to the heart of God. I'm not afraid to praise the Lord in front of others. I've made the decision that He is first and He is real, so why live as if I have something or someone to hide.

I am tired. I won't lie. This journey uphill is often extremely exhausting. There are few water fountains left on the path. But, I've connected to the resource that is Life Giving water. My God supplies for my emotional needs as I wait for Him to supply healing and restoration. My God comforts me when there aren't any arms to wrap themselves around me and pray with me, pray for me. My God is strength when I feel like I would have fainted, he lifts me up, he carries me and he encourages me.


Psalm 27:13-14New King James Version (NKJV)

13 I would have lost heart, unless I had believed
That I would see the goodness of the Lord
In the land of the living.
14 Wait on the Lord;
Be of good courage,
And He shall strengthen your heart;
Wait, I say, on the Lord!

My friend, Jehovah will strengthen your heart and comfort you. He will bring the healing if we seek Him. I do not give up believing His Word. We wait on the Lord. Sometimes, impatiently. Sometimes, crying out and loudly. Sometimes, tearfully and sometimes silently. We wait. I will wait on the Lord. Wait, my family, and my friends. God is faithful.





Tuesday, April 25, 2017

YOU CAN'T FINISH ME OFF!

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Written By Angeline M Duran Santiago

They have greatly oppressed me from my youth, 
but they have not gained victory over me.”

“Many a time have they afflicted me from my youth: 
yet they have not prevailed against me.”

 “From my earliest youth my enemies have persecuted me, 
but they have never been able to finish me off.”
Psalm 129:2

The more I take a moment to read the different translations of Psalm 129:2, the more my heart is filled with the assurance that in my darkest moments, I truly have not been abandoned, God has looked after me from my childhood. I look back and I remember so many tragedies, periods of crisis, and so many times where only divine intervention could have gotten my family and me through the difficulty. There have been sicknesses, traumas, and so many other things that are not worth the mentioning because I prefer to magnify my Great God and not a host of darkness whose end is defeat.

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I truly love these words and as I meditated on them this morning, I had to stop and just look up the different translations. Yes, I have been greatly oppressed, afflicted and persecuted. It seemed life in school and growing up makes this sentence so real for me personally. Even later on in my late teens when I God’s love called me out of the darkness and into His glorious Light, even in the church I learned what it meant to me persecuted, mistreated, falsely accused and left alone. Throughout my days, the opposition has never ceased to come against me.

The awesome truth of getting into God’s  Word is the second part of this verse. It says, they have not gained victory over me, they have not prevailed against me and they have never been able to finish me off. Hallelujah! Praise the Lord! Do you see this? Do you get it? Really get it? I heard the Lord speaking into my life this morning and saying, “Girl, I know they’ve been oppressing, afflicting and persecuting you since you were a little girl, but don’t you know it’s not going to break you? Don’t you see this is not your end? Don’t you realize that a Greater one than “they” and “your enemies” has always been by your side?

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I am encouraged this morning because these words are not just for me. These words are resounding loud and clear for my son Jacob, Type 1 Diabetes has afflicted you from your infancy, but it will not destroy you! God is with you! These words are for my son Aaron and my daughter Jeru. Yes, you have gone through much in your short life, but God has and will continue to fight for you and conquer those that come against you. These words are for my brothers and their families. These words are for my parents, yes, my parents need to know that they’ve gone through the battles and the storms. People have done so much wrong to you and your family but God is reminding us that in the midst of all the wrong, all the hurt and all the assaults on our family, past and present, God is saying, "This is not for your destruction!"

Amazing! It is awesome to have the Scriptures that tell me of God's plan, that reveal to me God's love, His purpose and His power for me each day. Yes, we enter the battlefield, but we are trained from head to toe. We are never abandoned and never forsaken. God allows us to begin at the starting line and He is with us as we reach the victory at the finish line. God is present when we're pushed down but He is present to lift us up and keep our heads held high. God is present when we cry but he is present when we rejoice! God is ever present in the silence but oh, He is ever present when we put on the music and dance before His presence!

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This is not just for my family. This is for you, dear reader, dear brother and sister in the Lord. God knows your past , but oh, how much more wonderful that He is not only with you today and tomorrow but He will be with you in the upcoming years to keep giving you the victory that comes when we trust in His power, faithfulness and love. This is for you if you've gone through the wreckage of a hurtful past. If you have been let down. Whatever you have gone through, do not, I repeat, DO NOT FOCUS on the past. God wants you and me to look ahead because when we keep our eyes on Him we are able to see that we have not been completely demolished.

Trust in the Lord. He is more than good. 
He is faithful. He is Lord and He never fails.

Monday, April 24, 2017

YOU DON'T WANT VICTORY !

By Angeline M Duran Santiago



 I wake up, get ready and go on with my day believing only the best is before me. Life surprises me with hits that come from all corners, unexpectedly, and in the most furious ways. My moments at work and riding home seem more like I've been abandoned on the battleground, enemies lay hidden down all around me and the arrows are aimed and released against me. Not once had I believed the fight was completely over, but not once did I see myself in such a fight.

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Being here, I go through the motions. I go from anger to frustration, from feeling alone to being completely lost and no longer knowing what to do. I talk to God and I tell him that at this point in time, everything I ever thought I knew seems terribly small in comparison to what I need to know. I long for words of wisdom to be written upon the clouds but even the clouds are silent. I acknowledge that anything I've ever claimed to know and hold on in regards to my faith and my hope in Christ needs to be strengthened and that I need to adjust my strap and lock on to Him even tighter than ever. 

I look around me and the ones that should be fighting with me are laid back as if the dark clouds and the storms cannot touch them. The pain I see others feeling seems invisible to them because it is not a real pain on their own bodies. How, Lord? How can we be so indifferent to the hurts of others when we are commanded to help one another with our burdens and to weep with those that weep? How easily we turn away and pretend the fight is not ours when the battle has knocked on our door and not waited for anyone to answer and open, but it has used force to enter and begin to twirl in our midst.

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Victory. You don't want victory! For if you wanted victory you would see what I see, feel what I feel and take your place and fight. If you could understand what is at stake here there would be an attitude to pray, to fight back and refuse to let the enemy to have his way in our lives and in our home. You don't want the victory because you've seen God work it out in our lives too many times before and think it's always going to be the same.
No. This is not the same battle as before. Can't you see we're about to lose so much more than ever before and still, still you won't take your place and lift up your sword!

I fight alone, most of the time. Yes, there are those who have never left my side. But, here, here in our home, why do you leave my alone to face the enemy and to stand against the Goliath of this age? Where is your ability to pray with me, pray with us, and lead us in a word that commands the hosts of hell to flee. You look at me and see how the enemy continues to launch his missiles against us and then you turn to the other side and fall asleep. Asleep. You are tired and complain as if no one else is tired and weary. You have given up and you can't help us fight because you don't want to. You don't want to win this fight. You don't care if there is victory or not because you've become content and conformed to what life has been and regardless of what changes or doesn't change, you certainly will not.

I have no choice but to keep my armor on. God's armor upon me is my only promise to succeed. Lord, I don't know how to face the enemies that come towards me. I am trying the way I thought I knew, but I feel like a child and I surrender completely and ask you to once more, teach me anew and train my hands for war. Fill me with divine wisdom and knowledge to see and understand. Give me words to speak and silence me when I must stay quiet. Lord, strengthen me in my body and in my heart. Strengthen me in my spirit and give me courage to fight on, push through, run and jump and clash against the swords and arrows that come towards my family, towards my home, against my son and against my sanity.

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Rise, oh Lord, and take your place near me and with me. My mind hears the whispers that I am alone but I know it is a lie, You are with me like a Mighty Warrior. Arise O God and work in my life and in my situation. The wind dares to say I am defeated, but I know that I am and will never be destroyed as long as I trust in You. Lord, come near and flood my life with your presence. All around me people try to encourage me but their words are empty and I walk away. Your words are life and they give me power to take each step, each day.

Dear God, my heart wants to shout out to the heavens and request the heavenly armies to come and destroy everything that is happening around me. I feel lost without you, Lord, but I know that I know you have not forsaken me. You have not left me to confusion or insecurity. When my mind feels like I can't remember or I've lost track of what makes sense, I remember to meditate upon you and you will keep me in perfect peace. 

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Tired. So many around me are tired and they put their swords down. Weary and conformed is how so many are because they're ok with life around them. Life hits those around them and because their own bodies are not touched, they resign to living day by day and do not worry. It's not with me, they say, so they don't pray. This is why I say, You don't want victory. For if you did, you would take this attack personally.

Lord, show me how to fight. Train me and teach me how to confront these situations and circumstances in my life. Direct me always. Don't let me fail. Don't let me fall. Keep me close to your heart. Guide me continuously. Lead me. Move through my life and in my life. Use my life, my words, my heart and my entire being for your glory and to magnify your name. Use my life so that when others see what you have done, they will see and say, "What a mighty God we serve!" Be on my side and bring glory to this situation. Be magnified in my life, in the precious name of Jesus, amen.     

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