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God's Supernatural Door to Joy

by Sandra Clifton

Have you ever looked through a kaleidoscope lens to see a picture form, only to turn the base and experience an entirely new picture form before your very eyes? I had this kaleidoscope effect happen to me one day—surprisingly, at a time when I least expected it.

I was sitting on the couch, feeling overwhelmed by some challenges, and feeling less than up to facing any of them. This is when I prayed. And this is when the kaleidoscope thing began to happen in a way that I could only describe as supernatural of God.

As I prayed, I was suddenly led to thank the Lord, not for my problems and challenges, but for His greatness and goodness. The more I began to thank Him, the more it felt as if I was moving through a great door into His very presence—a special door that gave me access to the very throne of God ... that intimate place in Him where there was a joy beyond words, hope beyond limitations, help for every need.

In that precise moment of thanking the Lord for His goodness and greatness and His love, I began to see myself with new eyes— I saw myself through His unconditional loving eyes...eyes that spoke beyond words His love for me, eyes that shone brightly with the promise of brighter days ahead.

I was reminded of God's Word that promises us that in His presence is the fullness of joy (see Ps. 16:11). I was now living this promise! His joy was greater than any down mood or sorrow I could possibly experience! I was also comforted that His joy was available to me 24/7. It is available to us all.

The mere act of giving thanks to the Lord was an invisible but powerful door in the Spirit that could usher any of us into His awesome presence—bringing with it, the miracles of His love and His joy and His strength for us to walk in.

This Thanksgiving, I invite you to walk through this miraculous door in the Spirit of God—His door to the great love and joy that awaits you. Happy Thanksgiving!

Sandra Clifton has a doctor of ministry and masters of divinity from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Okla. Sandra and her husband, Terry, both ordained ministers, have an outreach healing ministry called Sandra Clifton Ministries. She is the author of From New Age to New Life and New Age Lies Exposed. read more

Focus on Thanksgiving

As we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving on Thursday, Nov. 24, we're focusing on the holiday celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November in the United States. Starting Sunday, Nov. 20, be sure to visit the Ministry Today website for timely articles and features on Thanksgiving.

To kick it off, try your hand with the Thanksgiving Trivia Quiz below. The answers are at the end. Please let us  know how you did by commenting at the bottom.

1. Just before the Pilgrims came to America, they lived in:

A. Ireland B. France C. Holland D. Scotland

2. The Pilgrims who came to America on the Mayflower to find religious freedom were called Separatists. The others on the ship with them were called:

A. Socializers B. Strangers C. Sympathizers D. Sailors

3. The title of the supreme leader of the Wampanoag Indians, who helped the Pilgrims, was Massasoit, Ousimechan, which meant:

A. "Peaceful Protector" B. "Raging Buffalo" C. "Yellow Feather" D. "Strong Tree"

4. Squanto and Samoset taught the Pilgrims how to plant the "three sisters" of Indian agriculture:

A. Barley, corn, and beans B. Potatoes, rice, and corn C. Squash, corn, and potatoes

D. Corn, beans, and squash

5. The name of the captain of the Mayflower was:

A. Miles Standish B. John Smith C. William Brewster D. Christopher Jones

6. The name of the baby born on the Mayflower during the crossing of the Atlantic was:

A. Atlanticus Standish B. Boatswain Smith C. Oceanus Hopkins D. Peregrine White

7. The Indian, Squanto, taught the Pilgrims how to grow corn and cook other foods native to America. He told them to plant corn "as soon as the leaves of the white oak were as large as the ear of a ..."

A. Squirrel B. Cat C. Lamb D. Wolf

8. Which one of these men did NOT actually serve as governor of Plymouth Colony?

A. William Bradford B. Edward Winslow C. Stephen Hopkins D. Thomas Prence

9. Which foods did the Pilgrims not enjoy at their first Thanksgiving?

A. Bread, milk and potatoes B. Fish, berries and watercress

C. Lobster, clams, and boiled pumpkin D. Berries, plums, dried fruit, and cornbread

10. The first president to proclaim a National Day of Thanksgiving:

A. George Washington in 1789 B. Thomas Jefferson in 1810

C. Abraham Lincoln in 1863 D. Ronald Reagan in 1984

Correct Answers

1. C. Holland

2. B. Strangers

3. C. "Yellow Feather"

4. D. Corn, beans, and squash

5. D. Christopher Jones

6. C. Oceanus Hopkins

7. A. Squirrel

8. C. Stephen Hopkins

9. A. Bread, milk and potatoes

10. C. Abraham Lincoln in 1863 read more

The Revolutionary Concept of 'The Miracle of Marriage'

Dr. Doug Weiss is all about healing—devoting his life to healing the sexually broken. Through his work as a counselor and clinical psychologist as well as his many books, public speaking and numerous media appearances, Dr. Weiss has been able to help rescue thousands from sex addictions and other problems—with an 85 percent success rate.

Because he's really healing marriage, it was natural that I invited Dr. Weiss to be the guest editor of the November-December issue of Ministry Today, with the theme of strengthening marriage. We refer to Dr. Weiss as "The Marriage Doctor" in the issue—which is now available—because he's putting lives back together and affecting the very fabric of our society at a time when it seems everything is trying to tear it apart..

You can read Dr. Weiss' "The Miracle of Marriage" cover story, in which he shows how helping build strong marriages begins with recognizing their unique place in God's creation.

Dr. Weiss is challenging our very concept of what Christian marriage is. I heard his teaching "The miracle of marriage" a year ago for the first time. He says the concept of "one man, one woman" is incomplete. Marriage was really God's last creation on earth. And He created marriage as a trinity—between Himself, and the husband and wife. This is a revolutionary concept we must begin to take hold of. To me, it's the most important message of the issue.

What do you think? Please feel free to comment below. read more

Did You Miss 'The Marriage Doctor' aka Dr. Doug Weiss?

Did you miss the Ministry21/Ministry Today conference call earlier this week with Dr. Doug Weiss, who we call "The Marriage Doctor" in the November-December issue of Ministry Today—now available? You can listen to our engaging conversation with the nationally known author, speaker and Christian counselor, by clicking here.

A clinical psychologist, Dr. Weiss is the executive director of Heart to Heart Counseling Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., which offers 3 Day Intensives for marriage, sexual addiction and intimacy anorexia issues.

During the conference call, Dr. Weiss answered several good questions from listeners, including a number of wives, about pornography, polygraph testing and boundaries. Listen to the lively recorded call, and discover why Dr. Weiss is passionate about empowering churches in strengthening and restoring marriages.

Let us know your thoughts about the conference call by commenting below.

Now is the perfect time to subscribe to Ministry Today—a great gift idea for Christmas. We're currently offering a special promotion that includes two free gifts—evangelist Reinhard Bonnke's "Full Flame" DVD series and the ESV (English Standard Version) Thinline Bible. Click here to subscribe to Ministry Today. read more

News You May Have Missed

Check out some links below to recent stories from Charisma News that you'll find interesting and informative. You can also sign up to receive stories on your smart phone by signing up for the free app Charisma News by clicking here.

Rick Warren Addresses Rumors He Supports Chrislam

TheCall Detroit Leaders Repent for Racism

Tony Perkins Says Obama is Hostile to Christianity

Crystal Cathedral Members Laugh, Cry During Bankruptcy Hearing

Hank Hanegraaff Defends Teen Mania Against 'Cult' Accusations read more

Don't Miss Dr. Doug Weiss For Our Next Conference Call

You don't want to miss the Ministry21/Ministry Today conference call next week with Dr. Doug Weiss. Join us for an hour of engaging conversation with the nationally known author, speaker and Christian counselor on Tuesday, Nov. 15, at 4 p.m. EDT, 3 p.m. CDT, 2 p.m. MDT and 1 p.m. PDT.

Here is the call information: Dial-in number (712) 432-1001; access code: 465167955#. Listen in as we to talk to Dr. Weiss about strengthening marriage, the theme of the November-December issue of Ministry Today, now available.

A clinical psychologist, Dr. Weiss is the executive director of Heart to Heart Counseling Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., which offers 3 Day Intensives for marriage, sexual addiction and intimacy anorexia issues (drdougweiss.com).

He has helped save thousands from sex addictions in the last 20 years. Today, he is passionate about empowering churches in strengthening and restoring marriages. You can read my "Healing Marriages One at a Time" introductory article about Dr. Weiss in the magazine's latest issue, now available, by clicking here.

You will want to get a copy of the magazine because the issue is full of good material by nationally respected leaders such as Gary Smalley, Dr. Tim Clinton, pastor Jimmy Evans, and Larry and Jonathan Stockstill—who were Ministry Today guest editors last year on the issue of "integrity." So there is plenty here to minister to you in your own brokenness, and to help heal those whom God has entrusted into your care as a leader.

Now is the perfect time to subscribe to Ministry Today—a great gift idea for Christmas. We're currently offering a special promotion that includes two free gifts—evangelist Reinhard Bonnke's "Full Flame" DVD series and the ESV (English Standard Version) Thinline Bible. Click here to subscribe to Ministry Today. read more

Exciting 'Ministry Today' Guest Editors Lineup for 2012

We're excited to have finalized next year's guest editors lineup and themes for Ministry Today, which is better than ever, as you can see below.

• January/February: Bishop Harry R. Jackson Jr. on Christian Political Action

• March/April: Robert Stearns on Christian Zionism

• May/June: Bill Johnson on Revival and Healing

• July/August: R.T. Kendall on Preaching (Balancing the Word and the Spirit)

• September/October: Joyce Meyer on "Loving Out Loud: Radical Generosity"

• November/December: Joey Bonifacio on Discipleship

In the past year, the Ministry Today "brand" has grown more than 200 percent. Our guest editors have brought new vitality to the magazine, while helping pastors and leaders grow both in ministry and personally. Our 2012 guest editors lineup promises to continue to bring valuable teaching and ministry insight to pastors and leaders.

Now is the time to reserve your best advertising space, as premium space is reserving fast. You don't want you to miss out on reaching thousands of Ministry Today readers with your product/services/books or conferences in 2012.

For more information on advertising, contact Ann Marie Kelly at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , call her at 407-333-7158 or click here. read more

Dynamic Marriage Resource From Dr. Doug Weiss

Dr. Doug Weiss is all about healing. He has devoted his life to healing the sexually broken. Through his work as a counselor and clinical psychologist as well as his many books, public speaking and numerous media appearances, Dr. Weiss has been able to help rescue thousands from sex addictions and other problems. He claims an 85 percent success rate. He personally understands sexual addiction, and has been successfully sober for more than 24 years.

Since the late 1990s, I've had the privilege of publishing several of his books, including The Final Freedom; Get A Grip; The 7 Love Agreements; Intimacy; Sex, God And Men; and 30-Day Marriage Makeover.

In 30-Day Marriage Makeover, Dr. Weiss discusses the power of intimacy and explains how couples can experience the abundant life Jesus promised—yes, even in marriage.

"Throughout my years of counseling, I have discovered that many marriages lack structures to encourage intimacy," he writes. "We grow up believing that one day we will get married and live happily ever after. We enter marriage ill equipped for intimacy and are disappointed when our husband or wife doesn't possess the secret code to intimacy either."

In this 30-day, step-by-step guide, Dr. Weiss uses his biblical knowledge and counseling experience to help couples strengthen their relationship with Christ, which will in turn deepen their relationship with each other. "I have been married for many years, and as we have applied these principles to our marriage, we have continued to grow closer and stronger together," he says. "Throughout the years, these principles have given life to my wife, to many of my clients and to me.

"Understand that passion is a result of setting priorities," Dr. Weiss adds. "Too many people attempt to get back the passion instead of getting back their priorities. Once you get the priorities back, the passion follows and grows naturally."

Click here to read an excerpt from the book and here to purchase 30-Day Marriage Makeover. read more

Did You Miss This In The News?

Check out some links below to recent stories from Charisma News that you'll find informative and intriguing. You can also sign up to receive stories on your smart phone by signing up for the free app Charisma News by clicking here.

Michele Bachmann Discusses Her Charismatic Roots

Can Controversial Film Sway Mississippi Voters to Ban Abortion?

Joel Osteen Discusses Views on End Times and Heaven

John Hagee Donates $6 Million to Jewish Charities

'Anonymous' Movie Attacks Christianity read more

nivcover

The NIV Debate

A recent salvo against the 2011 edition of the New International Version (NIV) is not likely to resolve the 20-year divide over gender-neutral language in modern Bible translations. Yet the latest round of debate is spilling into the pew, making it a concern for every pastor.

Released originally in 1978 and updated in 1984, the NIV is today’s best-selling Bible in charismatic and evangelical circles. It isn’t the only version that upsets critics of modern adaptations, but it attracts far more attention than such versions as the New Living, New Revised Standard or New Century Bibles.

Gender references in the Today’s NIV that debuted in New Testament form in 2002 and the complete Bible in 2005 prompted intense criticism over the inclusion of gender-neutral language. In 2009, rights holder Biblica announced an update that would supplant the TNIV. This occurred with the release in March of the new NIV, published by Zondervan. read more

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