Do Not Neglect Your Daily Intimate Contact with the Lord

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(1 Timothy 5:8)

For men and women whom God has given a great amount of energy and ability, one of the biggest traps the enemy uses is getting them so focused on daily work that they neglect other aspects of their life. It is common to minimize and not give enough time to that daily, intimate contact with the Lord that is so critical to anyone who professes Christ as their Savior. The other area that suffers is the responsibility to the home.

As one who fights this battle daily, I can personally attest to how easy it is to get caught up in our job or career. It is something that can happen in a very subtle way over a period of time, and without any bad intentions or motives. It is a very clever trap of the enemy that I want to expose today and share with you how to avoid at all costs.

The passage of scripture today very clearly lays out how God feels about those who neglect their home. If you notice, there are no exceptions. It doesn’t say you are exempt from being an infidel if you are in the ministry. Or you are exempt from being an infidel if you have an important job. Or you are exempt from being an infidel if many people at work depend on you. God was clear and concise in that taking care of our home is a major priority in our lives, without exemption.

I am totally convinced in my own heart, that the reason our society is in such a bad state today, is because we are now reaping what we sowed, as far as the family is concerned, since the mid-60’s. From the free-love, anti-authority days of the 60’s and 70’s, to the me-first 80’s, to the self-indulgence of the 90’s, and through today, we now have a generation who grew up without the love and nurturing of two parents.

Whether it be from divorce or parents driven to succeed at any cost, our society is now dealing with the problems of the breakdown of God?s family plan. God tries to tell us in His Word, that after our personal relationship with Him, the next priority in our life MUST be our home. There is nothing more important that we do each day than to operate as the spiritual head of our house.

IT IS OUR FIRST JOB, AND TAKES PRIORITY OVER ALL OTHER EARTHLY JOBS AND PURSUITS.

How do we avoid falling into this trap? The best way I know is a two-fold approach. I HAVE to start every day in prayer and the Word, or it doesn’t happen. It has become a discipline of mine over the years. That helps me to zero in on what is really important, and throughout the day gives me the type of God-centered focus I need to keep me where the Lord wants me to be.

Having started out that way each day, I then am reminded of my duty as the spiritual head of my home. To properly operate in that role requires sacrifice and planning on my part. I am very busy. I put in long days. But it is a priority each day to fulfill my role and obligation as the spiritual head of my house, so I plan into my day the things necessary to make that happen.

It boils down to time management, planning, and prioritizing. It is funny how we can always find the time to do the things we really want to do, the things that please us. That simply proves that it really boils down to our priorities. If we follow God’s Word, and our home is a top priority, then we will find the time to provide the spiritual leadership in our home God has called us to provide, regardless of what else we do in our daily lives.

I know that this is difficult for many to read. Many you are saying that it sounds good, but that it is not realistic in your case. Let me reiterate. It MUST be realistic, because it is what God has instructed us to do. Of course, I have not even addressed the issue of single-parent homes in all of this, but that doesn’t change God’s command. There are NO exceptions.

One thing I have found in my personal journey with the Lord, when we are trying to follow His Word, attempting to live in obedience to His commands, He will help us. Again, there may be sacrifice involved, it may not be easy, but God will strengthen you, give you wisdom, and part the seas to help you follow Him.

I love you and care about you so much. I pray that you will read these words today, sit down and pray, and ask God how you can fulfill what He has asked you to do in relationship to your responsibilities at home. In some cases, you may have to totally readjust your lifestyle. Again, God will help you. There are several passages of scripture that are very strong and very clear. I am praying that He opens your eyes and heart to fulfill your responsibility to your home each day.

In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,

Bill Keller

(C)opryright 2012, Live Prayer Church, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

I Am at a Crossroads Today

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(John 3:16)

I am at a crossroads today. In 2007, I wrote a Devotional stating that 2008 would be a monumental year, a year of great change. It was. We saw the financial crisis that has impacted tens of millions of people in this nation, hundreds of millions more around the world explode. We saw the election of a new President who has spent his first three years in office taking a stand for everything God opposes and helping to lead this nation deeper into the spiritual abyss.

However, starting May 1st, Liveprayer will be leading a very high profile and public stand to turn this nation back to God and His Truth! By May 1st, all the pieces will be in place to literally change the spiritual course of this nation with your help! My biggest issue today is getting through these next 30 some days.

While over 12,000 churches have shut down, 120,000 non-profit organizations closed their doors, and with the property of nearly 40,000 churches in foreclosure, Liveprayer has continued to press forward despite seeing a 67% drop in donations from 2008 and losing 29 of our core group of 30 people who had the ability in times of financial difficulty to be able to overnight or wire $10,000-$30,000 to help us over a rough edge.

That is why over the past year I have had to come to you more often than I would like to ask you to pray about supporting His work here. During the first 9 years of Liveprayer, we only had to share our needs 3-4 times a month. With the economic downturn in the nation, we now have to share our needs 10-11 times each month, though it is still less than 3% of the content we produce each month.

Due to our extreme financial crisis at Liveprayer, I have cut my personal salary from $36,000 to just $12,000 for the past 2 years, and that is only in order to pay the most basic needs to survive each month. I have poured my heart, soul, life, and even blood at times into God’s work here the past 12 years to reach the lost and see HIS Truth declared in the marketplace, something few are willing to do, to be a rare bold, umcompromised voice for Biblical Truth in this lost age.

As I type these words tonight, I am at the end. Simply sustaining our daily operations is now a daily task. Simply paying for basic personal needs is becoming more difficult. For nearly 20 years, I have literally sacrifice my life, my time, my talent, and my treasure to bring the lost to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, and HIS Truth boldly and without compromise into the marketplace, as very few are doing, virtually none at a national level in the secular media

Don’t think for a second I am not of flesh and blood and think about how I could have simply fallen into line like the rest. Gone on Christian TV, brought false hope into people’s lives, never talked about sin or the hell that awaits those who reject Jesus, compromise and take the money from cult members, and totally sold out the faith in order to be politically correct and generate tens of millions annually to live like a rock star.

However, at the end of this life, I will stand before God our Creator like each person will. I will give an account for my life. The one thing I can honestly say when I die is that I never wavered, I never backed down from telling people the raw Truth of His Word, and that I never hesitated to boldly declare the only hope for each man is faith in Jesus Christ. That my friend, will be my lasting testimony!!!

I come today asking you to help me. Over nearly 13 years, Liveprayer has sent personal responses to over 70 MILLION emails. We still get over 40,000 a day. Tens of millions of live worldwide have been impacted. Over 600,000 we know of have come to faith in Jesus. THIS IS MY ETERNAL LEGACY AND MY TRACK RECORD OF SERVICE THESE PAST 12 YEARS!!! MY JOB IS NOT FINISHED!!!

All we have done has only been possible by dear friends like you who have prayed for me, and sacrificed to support me financially. In these 13 years, I have never asked for anything for myself, and despite sacrificing the vast bulk of what little personal compensation I took for several years, leaving me over $50,000 in current debts, my only goal today is to cover the $25,000 I need to simply keep Liveprayer alive for one more month. This is the way we have operated each month for the past 13 years. I have simply asked the Lord to provide what I need to get to the next month.

For those who have been part of the Liveprayer family for these many years, you know that I have never sent a Devotional like this unless it was an emergency. I don’t play games when it comes to the finances. I simply share our needs, get on my knees, and trust God to move on the hearts of people to provide for our needs.

My friend, I am counting on you today. I need to hear from you today. This is critical, and I desperately need your help. We are so close to seeing the fulfillment of all Liveprayer has been raised up to be. I can’t see everything stop now over a few thousand dollars, even if it was a million dollars. Somebody will lose that tonight in Vegas. Will you reach down, make the sacrifce, and help me today??? I desperately need you and will be in prayer for the Lord to move on your heart to help me!

The fact is, I need to bring in $10,000 of our $25,000 balance today to cover basic operational costs! If you have the liquid cash to wire to our bank, please email me at: bkeller@liveprayer.com and I will get you the info. If you are able to send a gift of $2,000 or more, FedEx it to our office in St. Petersburg, feel free to mark “bill recipient” and they will be our special account. After 13 years of pouring out my sweat and blood, literally 24/7, I will not see God’s work here slowed down or thwarted, and definitely not shut down. There are enough people with resources who can help me.

WE HAVE THE ABILITY, BASED ON 13 YEARS OF PIONEERING THE INTERNET AND BRINGING CHRIST TO THE MASSES ON SECULAR TV, OF BEING GOD’S AGENT TO TURN THIS NATION BACK TO OUR CREATOR AND HIS TRUTH. THE TIME IS NOW, OUR OPPORTUNITY IS UPON US, AND NOW MORE THAN EVER I NEED YOU TO HELP ME!

Please don’t think that just because there are 2.4 million subscribers, someone else will take care of this. It has been friends like YOU over the years who God has spoken to, who have responded, who has made Liveprayer available to bring hope and salvation to so many. It will take someone like YOU today.

Also, I know there is someone reading these words who God has richly blessed, you have been praying about a place to use your resources where God can multiply them exponentially in the lives and eternal souls of men. THIS IS IT! CONTACT ME AND LET’S CHAT HOW YOU CAN HELP ME!!!

To make a gift to Liveprayer on your major credit card at our website http://www.liveprayer.com under the “Donation” button, or you can give from your PayPal account by using my email address, bkeller@liveprayer.com , or you can mail it to: Liveprayer, 6660 46th Avenue North, St. Petersburg, Florida 33709. One the credit card or PayPal form after your name simply mark (9-11). All gifts to Liveprayer are 100% tax deductible.

I love you and care about you so much. Do you want to do something great for God with your life??? STAND WITH ME!!! I CAN’T DO THIS ALONE!!! I am asking you today to simply pray about what God may be calling you to do to help me with this effort. I am also asking you to please forward this to every person you know, personally reach out to those who God has blessed with financial resources and encourage them to support this work of God, and share this email with your pastor and ask him to pray about having your church make a special missions gift towards this effort. I will keep you posted how we are doing with our financial goals over the coming weeks and months.

When this brief journey through life is over, what do we have to show for it? The only lasting legacy we have are those things we did for the Lord. I have taken my stand and will proclaim His truth with my dying breath. Today, I am asking you to pray about joining me and let’s turn this nation back to God and His Truth!!!

Will you stand and fight with me???????

In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,

Bill Keller

(C)opryright 2012, Live Prayer Church, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

There Are No Coincidences with God

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(Proverbs 16:4, 19:21)

If there is one thing the Bible clearly teaches, it is that there are NO coincidences with God. There are so many outside elements that you have no control over in your life, starting with your birth, ending with your death, and including everything that transpires in between those two events. The reason I want to bring up this issue today, is to give you the confidence and assurance that everything that is happening in your life today is part of His Divine plan for your life.

One of the reasons I stress so much to walk with the Lord daily, be in the Word of God, pray, seek Him each and every day, is so that you will follow His plan for your life. You see, we can bring much unnecessary pain and heartache into our life by exercising our God-given free will to ignore God and rebel. However, that does not stop God from still being in control. When we are in rebellion, when we are not on the path God wants us to be on, that is when we miss the joy, the peace, and the abundance this life can offer. That is when we are missing the blessings of God in our life.

I want you to understand clearly today that it is no accident you live where you live, you work or go to school where you do, you recreate where you recreate, or shop where you shop. It is no accident the people that are in your life are there. You see my friend, there are NO coincidences with God, things just don’t “happen.” There is a Divine purpose and reason for each and everything that goes on in our life. That includes the good, and bad things.

The natural question becomes, why? In many cases there simply isn’t an answer. Again, holding on to the fact there are no coincidences with God, helps us to build our faith during those times when there are more questions than answers. It also should give us the confidence and boldness to go out each day, knowing that God has a reason for everything we are experiencing in our life. Understanding what we are going through each day is not an accident, but part of His plan gives us the incredible freedom to live each day for Him.

I realize that many of you are going through difficult times in your life today. You are dealing with death, illness, financial difficulties, marital problems, issues with your parents or children, challenges at work or school, the walls seem to be caving in all around you. How this could be part of God’s plan may seem beyond comprehension. This was the same place a man named Job found himself one day. In spite of everything, he never lost his faith in God, and it was part of God’s plan to bless him abundantly.

We never know how God will deliver us from trouble, how He will bless us. Our job is to hold on to our faith, continue to praise Him in spite of the problems we face, and know He will never leave us nor forsake us. The Bible tells us that there will be times our faith is tested. It is at those times our faith becomes real to us, and grows. We grow more spiritually in the valley than we ever could on the mountaintop. It is in the valley that we recognize God as our only source of hope and learn how to trust Him. It is those times in the valley where it is just us and God that we realize how much He loves us.

I love you and care about you so much. Know today that God is with you, that nothing in your life is an accident, and that God is in control. It is no coincidence that the Lord has brought our lives together at this time in your life. I want you to know that I am here for you in your time of need. I will be praying for you. God is still on His throne, and in 100% control at all times. There are no coincidences with God!!!

In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,
Bill Keller

(C)opryright 2012, Live Prayer Church, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

God of the Bible

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(Deuteronomy 4:35; Psalms 83:18; 1 Corinthians 8:4; 1 Timothy 2:5)

Forty years ago, there would have been no need to even write a Devotional like this. Not only does the need exist for me to have to address this issue today, but it is a message that the world AND the church needs to hear. You see my friend, there is only ONE GOD, and that is the God of the Bible. The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. When we pray, there is only ONE GOD that we pray to, the God of the Bible. All other gods are false gods. Praying to a false god is as productive as praying to a tree, your refrigerator, or a toilet. There is only ONE GOD that hears and answers our prayers, and that is the God who created the heavens and earth, the God who created you and me, the God of the Bible.

It is critical that when we are talking with someone and use the name “God,” we call Him the “God of the Bible.” That way, there will not be any confusion to those we are talking to, who you are talking about. Because we are a nation where people are free to worship whatever god they want and with the influx in the past 100 years of people from every corner of the globe who have brought with them their false gods, not to mention the aggressive marketing and recruiting campaigns by every cult known to the world, simply saying “God” is not good enough. That is why you need to start making it a practice in your day to day conversation to call God, the God of the Bible.

I am aware of the various names that the Bible calls God by, but there are many false religions in the world that use all of the various names we have for God. There is no way to say “God” and be 100% positive everyone understands which god you are speaking about unless you call Him the GOD OF THE BIBLE. Also, when you hear someone use the name God, DO NOT just assume they are talking about the God of the Bible!

Let me make this perfectly clear. Allah is NOT God! Buddha is NOT God! The god of the Mormon cult is NOT God! The god of the Jehovah’s Witness cult is NOT God! The god of the Kabbalh cult is NOT God! The god of the Hindu is NOT God! The god of Scientology is NOT God! The god of the Christian Science cult is NOT God! All of the gods of the false religions of the world are NOT God! My friend, there is but ONE GOD, He is the GOD OF THE BIBLE!

I want to expose for you right now one of the politically correct traps that many Christians have fallen into, and it needs to stop now. It is a subtle trap of satan that they have fallen into so they don’t offend anyone. I think it is comical that satan has no problem offending Christians every moment of every day, yet we are supposed to be sensitive to people’s “feelings.” Let me tell you right now, if you are REALLY sensitive to people’s feelings, you will tell them the truth of God’s Word so that they don’t perish for eternity.

Many high profile Christians that talk to large audiences of Christians and non-Christians, those in the public arena, will use the name of God. I have no doubt they are speaking of the God of the Bible. I have no doubt that their Christian listeners understand they are referring to the God of the Bible. But I also have no doubt that those non-Christians hear the name God and believe it to be whatever false god thy may believe in. I can guarantee you when a Muslim hears the name “God,” he is thinking of allah. Allah is no more the God of the Bible than Mickey Mouse is. They are both fictional characters! I can guarantee you that when a Mormon hears the name “God,” he is thinking of the god of Mormon theology. The god of the Mormon cult is no more the God of the Bible than Jesus and Lucifer are brothers as that cult believes!

This is serious my friend. There is only ONE GOD that I pray to, and that is the God of the Bible since He is the one we have turned our back on and sinned against. In May, this nation will be observing the National Day of Prayer. I am calling on all of those associated with any National Day of Prayer events to use the term “God of the Bible” when they refer to God. I realize that they are afraid of offending those who believe in the false gods of the world, but what is the use of having a national day of prayer to pray to a false god that doesn’t exist? I am challenging all of those involved to not worry about what people will say, but boldly proclaim God to be the God of the Bible, since He and He alone is God!

I love you and care about you so much. I realize that while we have been sleeping and not paying attention, we now have laws that take the God of the Bible out of the public discourse. They have taken God out of the schools, removed Him from all public buildings, are trying to take His name out of the Pledge, working on removing Him from our money, and will continue to do everything they can to eliminate God. Now more than ever, those who know the God of the Bible must do everything we can to insure that HIS name is clearly identified and boldly proclaimed to this lost world since He is the only hope we have.

I will be praying for you today. Praying that when you say the name God, you identify Him as the God of the Bible so that those who hear you will have no doubt who you are talking about. In this lost and hurting world there are many false gods, but there is only ONE TRUE GOD. That is the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God who created the heavens and the earth. When we pray, there is only ONE GOD to pray to who hears and answers our prayers, that is the God of the Bible!!!

In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,

Bill Keller

(C)opryright 2012, Live Prayer Church, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

In the Wake of the Death of Trayvon Martin None of the Media is Dealing with the Spiritual Issue

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In the wake of the sad death of Florida teen Trayvon Martin, none of the media coverage is dealing with the real issue, and that is a spiritual one. Let me first say that this was, is, and in the end, will be a matter for law enforcement and the courts to ultimately decide.

It was rather sad to see the normal cast of opportunists,extortionists, and race baiters like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, along with the mainstream media, using this tragedy to irresponsibly gin up racial tensions and advance a specific political agenda. For the record, neither Sharpton or Jackson ever apologized to the young men at Duke they falsely accused of raping a black woman. As actual FACTS are now emerging, it may not have been the racial incident the media reported it to be. Again, in the end it will be the judicial system that will determine the facts and what if any crime was committed.

The spritual issue that nobody is focused on is the fact that the better percentage of two full generations have never even been to church. We have turned from God and Biblical Truth to embrace the lies of this world. Marriage is no longer a respected institution. As I have shared often, the breakdown of the family, the glue that holds our society together, is largely responsible for so much of the social ills we currently face in this nation. This turning away from God and His Truth has had a profound affect on everyone no matter what color your skin is!

Racism is not something unique to the black/white issues we have here in the United States. Those who live in other countries or who have spent time in other nations around the world, know all too well that racism is not exclusive to the United States and is sadly alive and well in most places today. Dividing people, due to whatever differences there may be, has been around from the very beginning of time and is one of satan’s most powerful weapons. Racism is a lie from satan. There is no white race, black race, yellow race, brown race…there is only one race..THE HUMAN RACE!!!

Now, more than ever the Church must rise above these divisive tactics. Unfortunately one of the most glaring examples of racism occurs each Sunday morning at 11 a.m. in churches all across our nation. I applaud the many fine churches that have worked hard to tear down these barriers and are a snapshot of Heaven with people who are black, white, brown, red, and yellow all coming together to praise, worship, and glorify their God and His Son Jesus Christ.

I pray that as you read these words, you will ask God what role you can play in helping to tear down the walls of division. I am so thankful that Liveprayer brings together over 2.4 million people worldwide every day, bound only by the love of Jesus Christ. People of every color, from most every nation, from ages 12 to 96, from every walk of life, rich and poor, and FROM EVERY CHRISTIAN DENOMINATION AND CHURCH GROUP. They are all simply looking for the hope we all need in this life, the hope that can only come from knowing Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.

The Bible is full of stories of racial tensions. Unfortunately, one of the enemy’s strongest weapons is that of division. The ability to divide people by race, speech, skin color, finances, location, or anything else we can think of has been one of Satan’s most effective tools of destruction. In our weakness, we fall into this trap so often.

Let me tell you right now, there is only one distinction that is going to matter for eternity. That is whether or not you know Jesus Christ as your personal savior. There are not going to be lines for Japanese, whites, wealthy, those with blue eyes, or for Baptists, Pentecostals, or Catholics. My friend, there are only going to be two lines when this life is over. The line for those who know Jesus Christ and the line for those who have rejected Jesus Christ!!!

My Bible says that God made man in His own image. Not white men in His own image, or black men in His own image, or Asian men in His own image….MAN. We are ALL created equal. GOD IS NO RESPECTER OF PERSON! I want to challenge you today to quit looking at why the person next to you may be different, and start looking at the person next to you as to whether or not they have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Their skin color is not important, but the condition of their heart is!!!

I love you and care about you so much. Please be praying for the family of Trayvon Martin during this time of their loss. Pray for the man who killed Martin, since he too needs God’s strength in his life. Finally, pray for those in law enforcement who will investigate this tragedy that the truth will be told.

God sent His Son to die for the sins of this world, so that WHOEVER believes in Him may not perish but have everlasting life. Quit worrying about the nationality of your neighbor and worry about his eternal destination. Let me encourage you today to start looking at the people God places in your life in a different way. Don’t dwell on how they may be different, but see how God may use you to open their heart to knowing Christ as their Savior.

Racism is a tool that satan used to divide people. My prayer today is that you will open your heart and look at your fellow man as God does….as a human soul made in God’s image that has the same problem we all are born with, sin. Let God use you to reach people regardless of the differences there may be, because in the end all men will live for eternity. How they respond to this man called Jesus will determine where that eternity is spent.

In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,

Bill Keller

(C)opryright 2012, Live Prayer Church, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Forgiving Others

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(Deuteronomy 7:8; Romans 5:8; Ephesians 2:4,5)

This is a very short and simple word for YOU today, but powerful in its truth! Many days we get so consumed with our lives that we lose sight of just how special we are. Life is filled with many problems, and because of those problems we sometimes get down and blame ourselves. Not a day goes by that we don’t fail in some way, and so many people tend to live in self-condemnation.

Let me encourage you today that God created you in His own image and made each person uniquely different. No matter what you are going through, what you may have done, God still loves you and in His eyes, YOU ARE SPECIAL!!!

Forgiving others can be very difficult, especially when they have hurt us in some way. However, just as difficult, even more so, is forgiving ourselves! The Bible tell us that we have all sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. There are no perfect people. But our God is ready to forgive us and cleanse us from all our sin if we will simply confess our sins to Him and repent.

My friend, you cannot change what has already been done, but you have total control over what you will do from this point forward!!! I pray that this day you will find freedom in the fact that you are special and God loves you. What may have happened in your life before is behind you.

You need to stand on God’s promise that if you are willing to confess those past sins and ask His forgiveness, He will forgive you and give you a fresh slate. If our God is willing to forgive you, then isn’t it time you forgive yourself? Let today be the first day in your knowledge that you are special. God has a plan and purpose for your life. Go forward to accomplish His plan for your life knowing that you are His child and He loves you unconditionally.

I love you and care about you so much. No matter what anyone may tell you, YOU ARE SPECIAL. Special to me, but more important, special to God. HE LOVES YOU SO MUCH! I don’t care what you are facing today, what the issues may be, take a few moments out of your day and just reflect on the FACT that in God’s eyes YOU ARE SPECIAL!!!

***MARCH FINANCIAL UPDATE: As we head into the last 5 days of March, we still need to bring in $32,000 to cover the balance of our March operations. Please take a minute today and pray, as the Lord what He is calling you to do today to help me. $10,000 of our balance is several weeks overdue, so I am praying for one or two people to step up with a special gift today to cover this immediate need. Everyone can pray, and most everyone can send a gift, even if it is sacrificing a couple cups of coffee and sending $5 to help support God’s work here at Liveprayer. Every week, God’s Truth is heard in the marketplace, millions of live worldwide are impacted, and apx 2,000 souls we know of come to faith in Jesus because friends like you pray make the sacrifce to help me. Thank you for standing with me as we turn this nation back to God and His Truth and see the lost won to faith in Jesus! You can make a special gift to Liveprayer on your major credit card at our website http://www.liveprayer.com under the “Donation” button, or you can give from your PayPal account by using my email address, bkeller@liveprayer.com , or you can mail it to: Liveprayer, 6660 46th Avenue North, St. Petersburg, Florida 33709. All gifts to Liveprayer are 100% tax deductible.

Thank you so much for your love, prayers, and sacrifice as we help change the spiritual course of this nation!

In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,

Bill Keller

(C)opryright 2012, Live Prayer Church, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

The Poker Craze

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(Psalms 118:8)

I have spoken often in the past of the relentlessness of satan, and we have another great example of that in the current poker craze that is sweeping across the nation. Poker, of course, has been around for a long time, but in the past several years television and the internet has introduced this game to millions of people that have become addicted to it.

Television has been responsible for the incredible interest in poker over the past year by airing poker tournaments where “average Joes” with no real experience ended up winning hundreds of thousands of dollars. It fosters the “if he can do it, I can do it” mentality that has encouraged people to start playing the game, primarily online. Don’t be deceived. POKER IS GAMBLING! Of course, like in all gambling, in the end there is only one real winner, the house!

Professional Golfer Phil Mickelson gained much notoriety several years ago when he placed a $20,000 bet at 28-1 at the beginning of the NFL season on the Baltimore Ravens to win the Super Bowl. The Ravens DID win the Super Bowl that year and Mickelson collected $560,000 from his bet. What you never heard about, of course, were his losses, since anyone who is throwing out $20,000 on 28-1 long shots is losing many more times than he is winning.

Reports over the years spoke of Mickelson’s gambling problems and the $15-$20 million he has been in debt to Las Vegas casinos at times. Former basketball superstar Michael Jordan is another high-profile athlete whose gambling losses over the years have become legendary.

The reality is, Mickelson and Jordan have the ability to lose millions of dollars gambling and still live their lives. It is a horrible use of the incredible resources God has bestowed upon them, but their gambling problem, even losing those types of dollars, has not forced them into poverty though it could at some point.

Most people who are losing money gambling do not have the type of resources and ability to earn money that Mickelson and Jordan do, and gambling can and will literally destroy their finances. As glamorous as TV and the internet has made poker, never forget for a second that it is GAMBLING.

The Biblical case against gambling! I am often asked whether it is a sin to buy a Lottery ticket. I am going to tell you up front that there is no verse in the Bible that says, “Thou shalt not gamble.” However, let me give you a Biblical basis why gambling is a sin.

Gambling is a game of chance. Ultimately, you are putting your faith in something other than God for the outcome. Therein lies the foundation of why gambling is a sin. Instead of trusting God, instead of putting your faith in God, you have chosen to put your faith in luck. You are hoping to beat the odds and it is putting your hope and faith in something other than God that makes gambling a sin. Let me outline for you three additional reasons why gambling is a sin.

First, it can cause you to lose sight of your priorities. Never forget, anytime something is more important than the Lord in your life, it is a sin. We are to love the Lord our God with all of our heart and He MUST be our first priority at all times.

Second, it can be a poor use of God’s resources that He has entrusted to you. Many people I have counseled are in financial difficulties, not because they have not been blessed by God, but because they have misused and mishandled their blessing.

Lastly, it can be a stumbling block to your brother or sister. Many people have a compulsive nature and could end up in total bondage to gambling. So while it may not be a problem in your life, your involvement may cause someone else to have a problem with gambling.

The root of gambling is GREED. You are trying to make easy money fast. Las Vegas is a thriving city in the middle of the desert that was built on the false hopes of millions looking to make that easy money the fast way. It is a mirage that will ultimately lead you to financial ruin and literally destroy your life.

The untold story of gambling is that even if you win today, you will lose it back tomorrow. The initial draw is greed, but it is soon overtaken by the “high” from being in the action. At some point, money is no longer the driving force of the gambler, it is that need to be ?in the game.?

I love you and care about you so much. Every night you can flip through the cable television stations and find poker tournaments being shown. It has brought millions of new players to casinos and card rooms around the country as well as those who play at home on the Internet. Sadly, it is causing lots of young adults who never gambled before to start playing poker. Young high school and college men are meeting on the weekends and having poker tournaments.

Many may say it is simply harmless fun and that most of these games have very little money involved. The problem is, any time you open the door to satan and invite him into your life, you may not be able to get him to leave! Playing poker on the weekend is no different than sitting down to watch a porn movie. You are opening the door of your life to satan to come in and destroy you.

I will be praying for you today, especially those who have been caught up in the bondage of this addiction to poker. If you, or someone you know is addicted to gambling of any kind, know that I will be praying today for those who are in this bondage.

God is a God of deliverance and He can deliver you from the bondage of gambling. Never forget that there is hope in Christ, and no matter how bad someone has destroyed their life, God can help them put the pieces together if they are ready to surrender to Him. Poker is a trap from satan . . . RUN FROM IT!!!

In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,

Bill Keller

(C)opryright 2012, Live Prayer Church, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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