Valerie Young

Valerie Young

It is my pleasure to be adding the work of Valerie Young to the Silver Lining Ministries website. Valerie is in the ministry of the Lord, and her desire is to serve Him wherever He leads. She has written devotionals for a Christian magazine for three years, and articles for a local magazine for 2 years. God has given her a desire to write, and inspires her to write Christian messages of hope and edification. Valerie's desire is to help people come to know the Lord Jesus Christ, and to help them in their walk with the Lord.



Valerie has published a devotional entitled REALM Of GLORY.
If you are interested in receiving a copy, please email Valerie by clicking the image below.

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Authority

“Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore, whoever resists the authority resists the ordinances of God?” (Romans 13:1,2a NKJV)
Some people have problems with authority, especially these day it seems, but the Bible clearly tells us we need to be subject to the governing authorities. And believe it or not, it also tells us to pay our taxes (verse 6). 1 Peter 2:13-14 also says, “Therefore submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake, whether to the king as supreme, or to governors, as to those who are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good.”
The world right now is going through much political upheaval and turmoil, and the authority of leadership in many places is sometimes questioned. Instead of complaining and criticizing (which does no good), we need to pray for those people, that God’s will would be done, and not necessarily ours. Because God knows the end from the beginning and He knows why He put certain people in places of authority. He has a plan and a purpose for everything even if it doesn’t look good to us. He puts people whom He chooses in places of authority, and He takes them out. I do believe however, that we need to pray for our nation, and that good Godly people will get in as leaders. When it comes to obeying those in leadership, we are to do so as long as they do not expect us to do things which go against the Bible and God.
There is also a governmental authority in the church. God designed it that way for our protection and edification. When we do things God’s way, things always go better for us. When we try to do things our way instead, we are rebelling against God and His authority. And the Bible tells us in 1 Samuel 15:23 that “rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry.”
To be a leader or a minister is to be a servant. Jesus said that someone who wanted to be great in the kingdom of God must be a servant to all. Jesus Himself washed the feet of His disciples to show that a leader must serve others and be humble. They are there to lead and serve, not to control. Overseers (or pastors) in the church have a great responsibility to feed the flock, to look after them and teach them the Word of God (1 Peter 5:1-3). The Bible tells us that those in leadership will be judged more severely than others (James 3:1 KJV). If those in leadership do wrong, God will judge them.
However, we do need to know the Bible and have discernment, so we do not follow a false prophet or minister. Our job is not to criticize or find fault, but to pray for them, and to honor them and give them due respect.









The power Of God

Romans 1:16 says, “I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ because it is the Power of God”. The Gospel means “good news”, and the “good news” is that Jesus is risen and sits at the right hand of God the Father in Heaven. But He sent the Holy Spirit to be with us now on the earth until He returns. Jesus is our advocate (lawyer) and makes intercession for us. It is like a courtroom, where God the Father, also call “Ancient of Days” is the Judge. The devil is the accuser of the brethren (us). But Jesus is defending us--Praise God! When we become “born again” we belong to Him, and are covered by His precious blood, and God sees us through that holy blood—as righteous. We are born the first time in the flesh, but when we come to the Lord and accept Him as our Savior, repenting of our sins, He puts His Spirit in us and we are “born again”-- that is a spiritual birth. If we do sin after this, we can come to Him in repentance and ask Him to forgive us and the Bible says “He is faithful and just to forgive our sins”.

Many today wonder where the power is in the church and why we are not seeing healings, miracles etc. as in Jesus day. The Bible says that the Gospel of Jesus is the Power of God. We need to preach about Jesus and His Kingdom. The Church of Jesus Christ is based on the revelation that Jesus is the Christ and the Son of God.

The Church began at Pentecost when the disciples were baptized with the Holy Spirit (and baptism means immersion), and that means they were immersed in the Holy Spirit. This event gave them the power they needed to have courage to minister for God. Peter who had previously denied Jesus three times had boldness to preach to the crowd that day. Then the Holy Spirit was there to do the work—healing, miracles and deliverance from evil spirits.

Daniel 11:32 says “Those who know their God will be strong and do exploits”. The key is to know Him and that means to have a relationship with Him, not just to believe that He exists. The devil believes that. Its not about religion—its about knowing and trusting in Jesus as our Lord and Savior—having a relationship with Him, by praying, praising, and reading His Word.

We must have faith in God--that His Word is true, and that He does what He says. He is a healing God and a God of miracles, and He is the same yesterday, today and forever. He can still heal, save and deliver today. When we pray for someone, it is not we that do the work—it is God that does it. We cannot—but God can and will do it. He is faithful and we can trust Him.

Unbelievers and young people want something that is real and that works—not just a bunch of words. We need to introduce them to our powerful, prayer-answering God. Tradition and religion won't work—we need to present Christ Jesus to them. The Church must teach the Kingdom of God and focus on the Gospel of Jesus Christ because it is the Power of God! Jesus is alive today! He has been resurrected--He didn't stay in the tomb. And if Jesus was resurrected, those that believe in Him will be also when He returns, and that won't be long, I don't think. The Bible tells us that there is only one Name under Heaven by which we must be saved—and that Name is Jesus!.









The Fire & The Power

Today we need the fire and power of the Holy Spirit like never before. Many of us think that we have the baptism in the Holy Spirit, but where is the evidence? Yes, we may speak in tongues, but do we have a passion for souls, and have the courage to witness for Jesus? That is the evidence. That is what happened on the Day of Pentecost—they were filled with the Holy Spirit—then they had the courage to speak out and witness for Jesus. The return of the Lord is very soon, and it is vitally important to bring as many in to God's Kingdom as possible now, while we have the opportunity.

The main reason for the baptism of the Holy Spirit is not for us to feel good or to speak in tongues (although that happens, and is a wonderful blessing), it is to empower us to minister for God—to spread the gospel, save the lost, heal the sick, do miracles and deliver those in bondage. Acts 1:8 tells us, “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you shall be witnesses of Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth”. And in Mark 16:17, it says, “And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover”.

The church today has fallen to sleep (or much of it), and we are lethargic. Something is missing—and that something is the Holy Ghost and the fire of God. We need this desperately, especially in the days we are living. It will take fears away, because it is often fear that holds us back. We need the courage to stand up for Jesus in this world, not just in church surrounded by other Christians, but out in the world. That's where the rubber meets the road, so to speak.

I recently read an article in “Prophetic Vision” by David Hathaway (an evangelist in Europe). He says that we do not realize how close we are to the return of Christ. He says we are living in the days when Christ will come back, and set up His Kingdom to rule the whole earth.

Jesus told us to preach the gospel, and go into the whole world, but begin at home! We don't all need to go all over the world. We can be witnesses here as well—where ever we are—where ever God calls us. In fact, North America needs to come back to God, and there are missionaries and evangelists coming to North America from other countries now. It used to be the other way around. Unfortunately we got lethargic and many have slipped away. How sad.

In the book of Revelation, Jesus told the church of Laodecia that they were lukewarm and that He would spit them out of His mouth. God wants us to be hot or cold—preferably hot! We need the passion of God in us and the fire of the Holy Spirit. I know I do. I pray for it. I couldn't do anything for God if it wasn't for the Holy Spirit helping me. I was extremely shy as a child and wouldn't even read out loud until Christmas (in grade one), and always hated speaking in public. Even though its not easy for me, the Lord, through His Spirit has helped me with it.

Peter a disciple of Jesus, followed Him for 3 years, preaching and healing people, but when it came down to it, he still had fears. When Jesus was arrested he denied that he knew Him, not once, not twice, but three times. How terrible he must have felt when the rooster crowed and he remembered that Jesus had told him he would do this. But after the day of Pentecost, he was endowed with power from on high, he stood up before the crowd and preached to them all. And for the rest of his life he preached and witnessed for Jesus, even to his death.

Isn't that just like us? We go to church, and read the Bible and some speak in tongues etc. We may even pray for people and they may get healed. But do we have the fire of the Holy Spirit in us to give us the passion we need, that takes away fear—the passion to see souls saved, and the love that sparks that passion? It comes from God, because God is love, and perfect love casts out fear (1 John 4:18). If we want the passion and courage we need for these end days, we need an infusion of God's love, and a fresh baptism of the Holy Ghost and fire. Amen!









Marvellous Works

At times we all feel inadequate, that we have fallen short somehow, and do not measure up, and there are some of us who have very low self-esteem. Perhaps someone in our past has told us that we would never amount to anything, or that we were no good, or not pretty or smart etc…and eventually we believed the lies. The negativity has stuck with us down through the years and has produced fears and anxieties and has kept us back from being who God created us to be, and from doing what God has created us to do.

Some of us put walls up around ourselves to shield us from other people, because we are always angry or hurt about something, whether real or imaginary and are always on the defensive. This stems from low self-esteem too.

But God made us, and the Bible says that all His works are marvellous. Psalm 139:14 (NKJV) tells us that “I will praise You for, I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvellous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well”.

Psalm 139 is a wonderful and comforting Psalm. It tells us that God knows our sitting down and our rising up; He understands our thoughts afar off and He knows all our ways. Verse 7 says, “Where can I go from Your Spirit or where can I flee from Your presence?” Wherever we go, God is there. He is waiting for us to come to Him and follow Him because He loves us and wants what is best for us.

Verse 13 says, “For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb”. Verse 16 says, “Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, the days fashioned for me, when as yet there were none of them”. God knew us before we were even born, and He has a plan for our life. He created us and He loves us. He desires to put us on the right path, but we must allow Him to. He is a gentleman and will not push His will on us. The Lord says in Jeremiah 29:11 (NKJV) “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope”.

God made each one of us unique and gives us all different and varied gifts and talents. We shouldn’t feel inadequate or measure ourselves by others, because we are all special with diverse abilities. Problems come when we try to copy or follow others instead of Jesus. We get off track endeavoring to do things that we were never meant (or called) to do in the first place. When we do this, we fall short and feel inferior because we are not doing what God called us to do. We must look to the Lord for direction and trust Him to be the light for our path and not blindly follow others. When we get on the path God has for us, we will be content and satisfied with our life and be blessed. Things will not always be perfect of course, but God will be there with us, helping us and we will feel more content knowing that we are in God’s will.

We never need to feel inferior to others, because God made us all individually and not with a cookie-cutter. We all are unique, with special qualities and gifts, and we must remember that God made us and His works are marvellous! He has a wonderful plan for our lives when we get on the path He has for us.









Winds Of Doctrine

These are day of great deception with so many beliefs and doctrines out there, that it can be very confusing to know what to believe and what is right. 2 Timothy 4:3 says “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.” That time has come. Many are turning away from the truth, turning away from the Bible, and the Bible is the truth— it is God's Word. 2 Tim. 3:16 says “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God”, so we can trust it, and believe it. Some have twisted the Scripture to their own desires, or left out parts or added parts, to their own peril (see Rev. 22:18-19).

Jesus is our example and our teacher—as He was to the disciples. We are His disciples too, if we follow Him. Jesus told Nicodemus that he must be 'born again', but he didn't understand what that meant. Jesus explained to him that it is a spiritual birth—the first time we are born of the flesh, but the second time we are born of the spirit—God's Spirit. When we accept the Lord and repent of our sins (and we have all sinned), a nd decide to follow Jesus, God puts His Holy Spirit in us, and we are new creations. Jesus told Nicodemus that if one is not 'born again', one cannot see the kingdom of God (John 3:4).

We need the Holy Spirit to understand the Bible properly, because the Word of God was given by the Holy Spirit. He will freely give us the Holy Spirit if we ask.

1 Tim. 4:1 says “Now the Spirit expressly says that in the later times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons”. Many are departing from the faith for various reasons, but much of it is deception. People are deceived by the devil and don't know what to believe, or they believe the wrong things. That is why it is so important to be 'born again' and have the Holy Spirit and know our Bibles and study them ourselves, so that we know the truth. Jesus told Thomas that He is the Truth, “Jesus said to him, 'I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). We need Jesus—He is the Truth, and the Way, and the Life, and that is the only way to the Father, and into God's kingdom.

Hebrews 13:9 tells us, “Do not be carried about by various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace”, and Ephesians 4:14&15 says “that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head— Christ”.

We need to know our Bibles, and follow Jesus, so we will not be carried about by every wind of doctrine. Then we will know the Truth.









The Great Commission

God gave the Great Commission to His disciples (Mark 16:14-15), but what we don't usually realize is that He gave it to them while they were in “unbelief” and had “hardness of heart”. Jesus upbraided them for this just before He gave them the commission to “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature”. Remember they had just seen their leader and Messiah crucified, and they were very fearful and discouraged.

Jesus rebuked His disciples first for not believing those who said He was alive. But then He gave them this--the only real commission from Jesus—to go forth and evangelize. Do we not have unbelief today too? We think we have faith but when it comes right down to it, do we? When we get in a difficult situation do we have faith? It is something to think about and ask ourselves.

Think about the Hebrews who God took out of Egypt. They saw the plagues God put on the Egyptians, and the miracles He performed such as the parting of the Red Sea, the fire by night and the cloud by day, the fire on Mt. Sinai, they ate manna from heaven and saw water gush out of a rock, and their sandals didn't wear out for 40 years. But when Moses went up on the mountain to receive the Ten Commandments the people, led by Moses brother Aaron who spoke for him, made a golden calf—an idol, to worship. How soon people forget what God has done. So none of those people, except Joshua and Caleb, and those under 20 entered into the Promised Land.

God saved and delivered them and led them for 40 years, but they didn't make it to their land of Promise. God said they had “disbelief”--that they didn't believe the promises of God.

What does that actually mean--didn't believe? Because they saw all those miracles and things God did, they believed that God existed, they had seen things and experienced things. It was a matter of trusting God. Not just believing He exists, because even the devil and demons believes that God exists, but they are not going to heaven. Believing in God means trusting and obeying Him. We need to trust God and obey Him! Like the song says, “Trust and obey, for there is no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey”. That is what God desires—our trust and obedience. When we obey Him, that shows that we trust Him.

1 Sam. 15:22-23 says “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold to obey is better than sacrifice. And to heed than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry”. When we don't obey God we are rebelling against Him, and to be stubborn is like witchcraft. We are not trusting God enough to obey Him. We need to trust Him, especially in the days we are living in now.

The apostles saw terrible and fearful things in their days, many dying and even their Messiah dying on the cross. It was a dangerous time, and they were afraid for their own lives. They were discouraged because they thought Jesus would set up His kingdom on earth then, but they saw Him die. So when they got word that He was alive, they didn't believe it, and Jesus rebuked them for it. However, He gave them the “Great Commission” anyway. He uses earthen vessels to do His work on earth and spread His Gospel to the world. And the Gospel of Jesus Christ is the only answer to the world's problems, whether they know it or not.

The message we as Christians have is the only message that can solve their problems—not politicians, not the military, but us Christians, and the Word Jesus gave us. We must remember the Egyptians and the disciples and be careful not to have “unbelief”. God will give us His Spirit, so we have the power we need to accomplish that which He has given us to do. We need to trust our God and obey Him, and go forth with the Word of our Lord.









Idols of the Heart

The Lord told me a few years ago (in a prophecy) that He was going to rid the land of idols. This goes along with what He told Zechariah in Zech. 13:2 “It shall be in that day, says the Lord of Hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols from the land, and they shall no longer be remembered”. At first this might seem like a good thing to us Christians, and it is, but it might be hard for us too if we have idols and don't realize it. An idol can be anything that we love or worship more than God-anything that takes first place in our lives-sports, tv, books, shopping, phones, cars etc. The first commandment tells us “You shall have no other gods before Me”; (Ex. 20:3). It is a commandment and not a suggestion as are all the other commandments. We may not think we have any idols these days, as we don't bow down to statues of wood and stone, but remember that an idol can be anything that takes first place in our lives.

The Bible tells us that we can have idols in our hearts. ExekieI14:2-3 says “And the word of the Lord came to me saying “Son of man, these men have set up idols in their hearts, and put before them that which causes them to stumble into iniquity. Should I let Myself be inquired of at all by them?”; These people had idols in their hearts but were coming to the Lord to worship and inquire of Him, and God was not pleased. So He is not pleased with us either if we have idols in our hearts. And He said He is getting rid of them, so it will be difficult for us if we try to hang on to them. If we do that we are taking ourselves away from God. We must be careful not to allow things to become more important in our lives than Jesus Christ. He is the One who died for us and shed His own blood to save us from sin. He deserves first place in our lives. And God also said that He will not share His glory with another.

When we have idols we are estranged from God. “And God said, 'they are all estranged from Me because of their idols”; (Ezek. 14:5). And He warned them in verse 6 “Repent, turn away from your idols--”. And we also would do well to heed these warnings. We need to examine ourselves and our lives, and ask God if we have idols in our lives or our hearts, and if so, repent and turn from them, and give God first place in our lives. When we repent God is faithful and just to forgive us our sin. He loves us but we need to be faithful and obedient to Him.









Conformed or Transformed

We are constantly being bombarded these days with all kinds of stimulus, to fill our minds and thought: such as televisions, computers, magazines, radios and books, etc. all vying for our attention. They are not necessarily bad, but they keep our minds busy so that we don’t have time for God.
We are so busy reading our novels, watching our favorite television shows, listening to the radio or our CD’s, surfing the web, or talking on our telephones that we do not have any quiet time to hear God’s voice. We need to take time out of our busy schedules to pray and read our Bibles daily.
We say we don’t have time but we can’t afford not to take the time for God. After all, He took time for us, even dying on the cross for us. We always seem to find time for other things, so surely, we can find time during our day for Him.

I heard someone say once that if you only have time to read one book a day to make it the Bible. I think that is a good rule and I try to go by it. The Bible says in Romans 12: 1&2, “Present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God which is your reasonable service, and do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” We are not to let ourselves be conformed to this world and its values, but allow ourselves to be transformed by God’s Holy Spirit-- the washing of regeneration spoken of in Titus 3:5. The Bible says we (Christians) are in this world but not of this world. That refers to the world system. While we are passing through this world, we cannot always shield ourselves from every evil, but we can try to avoid as much as possible and give more time to the things of God. In other words, give God top priority in your life, which is the first commandment.

These days, even the church is conforming to the world, lowering its standards and becoming lukewarm. I have even heard of some churches inviting magicians to come and amuse the children for special occasions. In Deut. 18:10&11 the Bible says “There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who conjures spells, or a medium or a spiritist or one who calls up the dead. For all who do these things are an abomination to the Lord.” You might say that that was in the Old Testament and not for us today, but in Acts 19:19 the Bible says “Also many of those who had practiced magic brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all.” Clearly it is not for Christians to be participating in such things.

Many people watch soap operas today, religiously, allowing all the negative thoughts into their souls. (The soul consists of the mind, will and emotions). We are to guard our souls from evil. If you have allowed yourselves to dwell on negative or evil things and harmed your soul, and are repentant, take heart. For the Bible says, in Psalm 23 “He restoreth my soul”. If we repent (turning from our sin), Jesus is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and He will restore our soul. It is a wonderful thing to realize that He can restore our very soul and renew our minds. Are you being conformed to this world and all it’s ways or are you letting God transform you by renewing your mind? Keep focused on Jesus Christ and His Word.