The Message That’s Missing

It seems that every evangelical message these days is about Jesus being with us, for us, never leaving or forsaking us. Much is said about what He has done and will do for us. But something seems to be missing. It seems in the vast majority of these messages there is separation between Jesus and the Christian. Most of these messages are very encouraging and uplifting but something seems to be missing. What seems to be missing is “Christ in you the hope of glory.”

Now I know that any true Christian worth his salt knows the truth of that, but it seems to be sadly lacking in how we live life, deal with issues and problems, and respond to Him who loved us and gave Himself for us. Do we know and believe that we were crucified with Him and we no longer live, but Christ lives in us and the life we live we live by the faith of the Son of God who loved us and gave Himself for us (Gal. 2:20)? Do we know that Christ is our life (Col. 3:4) and the only life we have? Do we know that we are one Spirit with Him (1 Cor. 6:17)? Do we know that as He is so are we in this world (1 John 4:17).

Didn’t Jesus pray that we would be one with Him and the Father (John 17:22, 23) and I believe that prayer was answered. I know that it’s hard to get your mind around that. In fact it is impossible. But we don’t live by sight, but by faith. As Prov. 3:5, 6 says we can’t understand that or figure it out. As it reads in the Message “Trust GOD from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own.” (Prov. 3:5 MSG). If you figure it out on your own you might come up with a well-reasoned theology, but it will not do you much good.

After three years of studying theology at seminary and eighteen years as a Christian I was an alcoholic and a falling down drunk. I had to change my theology to experience my freedom in Christ. Or a better way to put it I had to believe Gal. 2:20. When I believed that I was “dead to sin and freed from it” I was free. I didn’t do a thing to get free. In fact I had a hangover the day I believed the truth that I was no longer living, but Christ was living in me and I have never got over it. How could you get over it? It staggers the imagination. It blows your mind! You don’t grasp it with your mind. As Rom. 10:6 says “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” (Rom. 10:9 ESV). We do not believe with our minds, but our hearts. That is who you are (in your heart). Heart is spirit. Stop trying to figure it out and as Jesus responded to Jairus when they told him his daughter was dead, “Ignoring what they said, Jesus told the synagogue ruler, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”(Mark 5:36 NIV). Ignore the facts, the circumstances, your feelings, what others say and believe Jesus (The TRUTH). If it is true that Christ is living in us and is our life, what else could we possibly need?

For some reason every summer our support drops to about a third of what it normally is. I’m not complaining, but making an observation. God has always been faithful to meet our needs and provide for us. In the early days (30 years ago) I complained about having to raise support. Now I rejoice in it as I see God blessing us and providing for us.

We haven’t done the webinars lately as Vernon Terrell’s wife is very ill with cancer. Vernon is the reason for the webinars. It was his idea and expertise that made it possible. Please pray for Vernon and his wife Brenda, and their three children. We are going to start the webinars with the Freedom From Addictive Behaviors webinar in August and the Helping Others Overcome Addictive Behaviors webinar in October. We will be emailing all the details and how to register later.

If God should lead you to support us and send a gift toward our support, just make out the check to Grace Walk Ministries and send it to PO Box 36537, Douglasville GA 30135. Include our name on a separate piece of paper in the envelope and not on the check (to make it tax-deductible). If you should decide to give us a gift through a credit card, you can do it on the web site. Just go to and scroll down and click on “DONATE”, then click on “ONLINE DONATION FORM” and fill out the blanks. Be sure to scroll down and put our name in the “Comments” section, so the gift will come to us. If you do not need a a tax deductible receipt you can give it through PayPal using this email address. We are very grateful for every gift we receive. We know that we couldn’t do this ministry without it .

A few other verses on Christ as life: Rom. 8:9 -11, 1 Cor. 1:30, 2 Cor. 13:5, Eph. 3:1, Col. 3:3 and one of my favorites when Jesus said,
“On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.” (John 14:20).

-Mike and Julia

God’s Presence Silences Every Lie

What keeps us from living the abundant victorious life that is ours in Christ? Satan? Well yes, but how does he do it? What is his weapon that is so powerful? Of course it is the lie, but how many of us realize that and do anything about it as we falter, fumble and fail in life as I’ve spent too much of my life doing. Why is the lie so effective? Because it is the most powerful weapon in the world next to the truth. Wars have born fought and millions have died as Hitler and Stalin got the populace to believe their lies. If Satan can get us to believe a lie about ourself, God and life then he can control our life and make us miserable. And he does this very effectively with most Christians. No, this is not in the least an exaggeration. What percentage of Christians  do you know that are living free in joy, peace and victory? I know some, but not that many.

So what do we need to live free and in victory? The truth? Well, yes but not in the way most of us think. It is not having a knowledge of the Scripture and being familiar with what the Bible says. It is not memorizing Scripture, meditating on it, praying it, quoting it (in times of temptation), listening to it, reading it, thinking it, speaking it (aloud), etc. You can take my word for it. I was a seminary graduate, former pastor, an avid student of the Scriptures. I memorized chapters of the Bible, in fact the two best chapters in the Bible on freedom and victory (Rom. 6 and Col. 3). While all this was going on I struggled with alcoholism for eight long, miserable nightmarish years.

I found my freedom a little over 25 years ago when I learned the simple truth of Galatians 2:20, that the old self that I was had been crucified with Christ and I no longer lived, but Christ was living my life and I lived by the faith of the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me. I had been a Christian 18 years at that point and all of the truth I knew had little effect on my experiencing the freedom in Christ that had been given to me. Yes, I needed to know the truth that I was dead to sin and freed from it. But what I needed the most was to know the reason I was dead to sin and freed from it (Rom. 6:6, 7) was because Christ was now my life (Col. 3:4).

I needed to know the truth, but what I really needed to know was the TRUTH and that the TRUTH lived in me and was my life. Yes, I needed to know the that the living embodiment of the TRUTH, Jesus Himself was living in me. When I understood and believed that it changed everything. Yes, I still had my struggles and my ups and downs, but my struggles with addiction were over. Truthfully I didn’t know that much 25 years ago, but it was enough to get me off the road to destruction, save my life and my marriage and give me a recovery ministry. The message of my ministry has been and is Christ is our life, our identity and we are dead to sin and freed from it. I have co-authored five books on freedom from addiction and that has been the core message in each of them. This message of “Christ in you, the hope of glory” is the only thing that I’ve seen that has helped anyone find any  freedom (Col. 1:27). There are lots of ways to cope with addiction and the 12 Steps are the best way the world has found to deal with it. But the only people I have ever seen who found real, true and lasting freedom from addiction were those who understood, knew and believed that Christ was their life.

Two months before I found my freedom I heard a message by Anabel Gillham on John 14:20 when Jesus said “On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you” that greatly Impacted me, but I didn’t understand it. God revealed the truth to me when I realized Christ was my life. In the past 25 years I believed I have grown in  my understanding Christ as life in me, but it is still the basic core message. If we pause and think about it then “if I no longer live but Christ lives in me,” what else could I possibly need? Over the 44 years that I have been a Christian and the 35 years I have been in full-time ministry I have known many Christians who were very knowledgeable about the Bible, but few who really understood Christ as life and were really living free.

As I was listening to a praise song this morning, there was a phrase that said, “His presence silences every lie.” I had heard it before, but this morning I really heard it. THAT’S IT! We can hear truth, listen to it, read it, memorize it, quote it, say it aloud, BUT when we know and believe and have a consciousness of His presence in us, it will stop, shatter, and obliterate the lies that we hear every day. Yes, truth really does set us free, but understand that the Word of God is not just written words in the Bible, but Jesus. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God (John 1:1).  Jesus said, I am THE WAY, THE TRUTH, AND THE LIFE (John 14:6). Since I found my freedom I have ministered primarily to those struggling with addictive behavior. Most are looking for a way to overcome their addiction. Therein lies a major part of the problem as they are looking for what they can do. But there is nothing for them to do as it has already been done. Many of them turn to the Scriptures as I did and study them assiduously. They all want a better life, but the only real LIFE is found in Christ and when Christians find Christ in them as their life, they find freedom.

It really is so simple and I think that’s one of the reasons few of us find freedom. After all, I’m a seminary graduate and an ordained minister. I can figure it out and make it happen. I gave it my best shot for 18 years delving into the Scriptures for the key to set me free and ended up a falling down drunk. But the missing key was –He was in me. It is simple, but not easy, of course, as everything in this life tells us that Christ is not our life and it is up to us.

When Jesus was on His way to  Jairus’, the synagogue ruler’s house to heal his daughter who was at the point of death, some people came from Jairus’ house told him, “Don’t bother the teacher any more, your daughter is dead (Mark 5:35). Ignoring what they said, Jesus told him, “Don’t be afraid, just believe” (Mark 5:36). And He raised her from the dead (Mark 5:41, 42).


– Mike