Call for Revival!

A CALL FOR PRAYER FOR A REVIVAL IN OUR NATION

March 18, 2019

Dear Praying Friends,

Thank you once again for your prayers. I can see and feel the power and effect of them in very real ways. God continues to provide me with His peace and joy. Our daily prayer circle each evening after 9:00 count continues to grow with more and men joining us each week.

But my real joy comes from the in-depth study of God’s Word just a handful of other men join me for. This past Saturday, they were like little kids in a candy store, as we looked up various places in scripture where it speaks of us having to go through “thlipsis” – the Greek word found in Romans 12:12 where Paul tells us to be patient (or persevere) in tribulation. The actual root meaning of the word is to “crush, compress or squeeze.”  It is a grievous affliction or distress, a pressure or burden of the spirit of man. We are crushed like grapes in a winepress, or olives being formed into olive oil. The outcome is something pure and tasty and pleasing. Until olives are aged and pressed, they are of little value. And so, we.

But, what I enjoy, is when the men get so excited not just about the issue at hand, but when they can’t stop reading, but say, “Well look at what it says a few verses later — wow!” They can’t seem to get enough! I love the tangents we go off on!

My prayers, since I have been here, is that I might exemplify a life truly transformed by the Holy Spirit, bearing the fruit of the Spirit which is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. This is the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22).

I encourage you to invite your neighbors and acquaintances to study God’s Word with you in your home, and to share such similar excitement. I remember while in college having the same experience, but in spite of God’s prompting, I failed to obey to do the same later in my life! If every believer would reach out in this manner, I believe it could revolutionize the nation for Christ!

But our secret weapon as believers, I am becoming more and more convinced, is prayer!  That’s why we are told to pray for our enemies repeatedly, and even for those who persecute us.  As long as we pray for them, they can never achieve victory. It is an impossibility!  For there is hope even in martyrdom. Our hope is an eternal hope, a concept our enemies cannot grasp.

I pray specifically, for circumstances and divine appointments with God’s elect servants for my enemies and for the convictions of the Holy Spirit to reveal their depraved and sinful nature to themselves, and their need for reconciliation with God. This would indeed be the greatest miracle, just as it was in my life at one time! And, so I pray their lack of peace and their emptiness might torment them in such a way that they realize only Christ can fill that void, and once they repent and turn from their sin, embracing Christ’s shed blood on the cross for the redemption of their sin, making Him Lord of their life, their guilt and anguish and emptiness will be lifted and they will find complete freedom in Christ! That is the miracle I long for more than any other.

And prayer, I am becoming more acutely aware, must be the secret weapon we utilize in calling our nation back to God. Only then, in unified and concerted prayer, will revival break out in individual hearts in a massive way. And in turn, revival will sweep our nation!

We must pray this passion for revival will be instilled in the heart of pastors throughout our once great nation, and that revival might begin within their own hearts, and spread to their congregations, into the homes of their parishioners, out into their local neighborhoods, communities, schools and places of employment!

And pray that God simultaneously will raise up godly men and men completely surrendered to Him to enter every walk of life – particularly, those areas we believers have greatly abandoned in past years to the devil’s soapbox. Places of influence such as politics, the courts, media, education and statesmanship.

Indeed, Satan is our number one adversary. He is our enemy. And so, we must fervently utilize our secret weapon – prayer – in these areas, as well.  Let’s cover the whole gambit of warfare in prayer, until an army of godly warriors is raised up to be the example of what righteous leadership should be.

We believers, myself included, have neglected this powerful weapon for way too long. And it is a weapon, for which the enemy has no defense!

Thank you again for standing in the gap for me, Kathie and my family. I feel very unworthy, but greatly appreciative!  Let’s wield the power of prayer to come against not just your and my enemies, but against the power and delusions Satan has over the eyes of so many people in our country and throughout the world – even many who claim to be Christians.

May God bless you. And thank you!

In His service,

Philip

“The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” James 5:16

Perseverance

March 7, 2019

Dear Praying Friends,

It is hard to believe this week marks three months that I have been in prison. My comfort level has greatly increased since the first few weeks, although it was extremely evident many were praying and I was surrounded with God’s angels, I was frightened to be entering prison. Thank you again for your ongoing prayers.

God continues to give me favor with other prisoners. There are now six who pray in our circle each night and between four and five of us who meet at least weekly to study the Bible.

I must say the most difficult thing is for me to be here in prison while my wife of 38 years is suffering at home with pneumonia. She is hoping to be well enough to come see me this weekend, which marks one month since her last visit, but I’m still uncertain she’s well enough to make the trip without causing a relapse.

Yet Paul tells me, we must “exalt in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance, and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope, and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” (Romans 5:3-5)

Dietrich Bonhoeffer once said, “A Christian life proves itself not in words, but character. No one is a Christian without character. Those who do not persevere experience nothing that will build character.” I do not know if Bonhoeffer was inspired by this passage when he penned those words, but he well could have been.

But what did Paul mean by tribulation? It could have been sickness, persecution, being falsely accused or ridiculed for Christ’s sake, financial hardships, hurting relationships, and more.

James says,

“Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.” (James 1:12)

The crown of our life is our hope, and it does not disappoint! No matter our sufferings, God’s love has been poured out to us within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given us!  Because of this indwelling of the Holy Spirit, we are able to endure anything Satan may send our way.

Peter says,

“But to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing; so that also at the revelation of His glory, you may rejoice with exultation.” (I Peter 4:12)

Some have told me they did not have it within them to endure what Kathie and I have gone through, yet I believe when that time comes, the Holy Spirit will provide you with the supernatural grace to endure. It’s not much different than when one faces death, something which I’ve been privileged to personally experience (I have written about this in my Journal). We think it will be a difficult experience, yet when the time arrives, the Spirit of God provides such joy and peace and anticipation it is inexplicable!  That’s the working of the Holy Spirit.

In the meanwhile, before tribulation hits you (and each believer is promised it will),

“Be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.” (Ephesians 6:10-11)

As we stand firm and persevere, the Holy Spirit will provide the grace for us to endure, and this produces character. So, what is character? I believe it is the fruit of the Spirit, which “is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, (and) self-control.” (Galatians 5:22-23)

I write similar thoughts down on a daily basis – what God reveals to me – and send it home. I do not know if any has yet to be posted on line and apologize if it has not (I have no internet access), but I know my family is hopelessly behind in the transcription particularly when I get very inspired, or verbose, depending on one’s point of view!  Please pray someone would help to undertake this task.

As I close, I want to thank again each person who has provided, notes, letters, cards, books, meals for Kathie and William, and even financial support.  All of it is an immense encouragement! But most appreciated is your prayer support!  I covet your prayers, and know it is what is sustaining us through the power of the Holy Spirit. Please continue to pray especially for Kathie’s full recovery!

In His Service,

Philip

DONATE TO PHILIP’S ATTORNEYS’ FEES: https://419fund.com/projects/philip-zodhiates/

No Pillows!

February 14, 2019

Dear Friends,

Thank you for your continued prayers, support and the mail that I received from many of you. I cherish every prayer and every piece of mail that I receive.  Often, when I read the encouragements you send, it brings tears to my eyes.

I’d imagine, Kathie is going through even a more difficult time than I am here in prison, which is actually quite an easy-going life – except for NO pillow, a very uncomfortable mattress and repetitious food and very boring. I have much to be thankful for and praise the Lord for.  I am certain that my brothers and sisters in the Lord imprisoned for [their] faith in other nations have it much, much more difficult than me.

I am also grateful for those organizations and attorneys who’ve filed Amicus Briefs to the United States Supreme Court on my behalf.  My understanding is that my case is the first on their docket for this year, scheduled for conference on Friday, February 22, to decide whether r not they’ll take the case. So, please pray!

God has given me a fair number of opportunities to speak into the lives of other men here in FCI Ashland and I covet your prayers in that regard.  God has given me great favor with other men in our unit, for which I’m thankful.  I feel very unworthy in this role and desire to represent my Lord and Savior in an impeccable manner. We have a short prayer time each night with a number of men now, and I lead a Bible Study each Saturday at noon in my unit with two or three other men. Neither of these events were going on prior to my coming. At this point, there are two men in particular very eager to learn everything they can about the Bible and living a Christian life.

At times, I do get very homesick, but God is sustaining me. His Spirit can just overwhelm me in inexplicable ways, and I am so grateful when that happens.

One late afternoon, walking back to my building from supper, I looked up to see a perfectly formed, probably 4-5 foot “V” formed on the side of my building. The first thing I thought of was that it was a sign from the Lord specifically for me. It was a cloudy afternoon, and I’ve never seen before in all my years, the sun and clouds form such a perfectly, straight sign. It was so incredible and so I thought, or the devil gave me the thought, that it was just an imperfection in the brickwork on the side of the building. But, the next day, it was not there.  I am convinced, it was a sign from God just for me!

I do not know how or when God will provide the victory, but I know it will be in a manner that He alone gets the glory. In the meantime, Kathie and I are called to be patient, endure, and wait upon the Lord’s perfect timing.  In the meantime, I enjoy spending extra time studying God’s Word and praying.

Thank you for standing with us. I know without you it would be very, very difficult. God bless you!

In His Service,

Philip

Knowing God

The Bible is very specific as to who and what God is and what He is not.

In Psalm 145, King David beautifully lays out who and what God is.

Verse 8 – The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and of great mercy.

You may be going through a tough time right now, but if you turn to the Lord, know that He will see you through. God uses the hard times to get our attention and turn us back to Him. He IS full of compassion and is tenderhearted toward those who love Him.

Verse 9 – The Lord is good to all, and His tender mercies are over all His works.

Romans 8:28 says that “ALL things work together for good. . .” The Lord has a bigger plan and He sees our future.

Verse 17 – The Lord is righteous in ALL His ways, and holy in ALL His Truth.

Trust and obedience are the way to God’s heart.  Trusting Him in everything and walking obediently in His statutes.

Verse 18 – The Lord is near unto ALL those who call upon Him, to ALL who call upon Him in Truth.

If you have lost your way, or cannot find happiness in anything you have tried – drugs, homosexuality, alcohol, transgenderism, religion – anything to fill the void in your life – call upon the Lord. He will not disappoint. God made us for a relationship with Him.

Verse 19 – He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He will also hear their cry, and will save them.

His Truth is found only in His Word – the Bible. The Bible was written for man “by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine [set of beliefs], for reproof [disapproval], for correction [process of correcting], for instruction [directions] in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect [complete], thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” II Timothy 3:16-17

2 Peter 3:9 – “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise . . . but is long suffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that ALL should come to repentance.”

If you do not know Him, cry out to Him, He will hear you!

I John 5:13 – “These things have I [Apostle John] written until you that believe on the name of the Son of God, that you may KNOW that you have eternal life, and that you may believe on the name of the Son of God.”

He is a good, good God, full of mercy and loving kindness, and He wants you to know Him.

 

Piano lessons

TRUE STORY…

At the prodding of my friends I am writing this story.  My name is Mildred Honor. I am a former elementary school Music Teacher from Des Moines, Iowa.

I have always supplemented my income by teaching piano lessons . . . Something I have done for over 30 years. During those years, I found that children have many levels of musical ability, and even though I have never had the prodigy, I have taught some very talented students. However, I have also had my share of what I call “Musically Challenged Pupils.”

One such pupil being Robby. Robby was 11 years old when his mother (a single mom) dropped him off for his first piano lesson.

I prefer that students (especially boys) begin at an earlier age, which I explained to Robby.  But Robby said that it had always been his mother’s dream to hear him play the piano, so I took him as a student.

At the end of each weekly lesson he would always say, “My Mom’s going to hear me Play someday.”  But to me, it seemed hopeless, he just did not have any inborn ability. I only knew his mother from a distance as she dropped Robby off or waited in her aged car to pick him up.  She always waved and smiled, but never dropped in.

Then one day, Robby stopped coming for his Lessons.   I thought about calling him but assumed that because of his lack of ability he had decided to pursue something else. I was also glad that he had stopped coming. He was a bad advertisement for my teaching!

Several Weeks later, I mailed a flyer recital to the students’ homes. To my surprise, Robby (who had received a flyer) asked if he could be in the recital. I told him that the recital was for current pupils and that because he had dropped out, he really did not qualify.

He told me that his mother had been sick and unable to take him to his piano lessons, but that he had been practicing.  “Please Miss Honor, I’ve just got to play,” he insisted. I don’t know what led me to allow him to play in the recital – perhaps it was his insistence or maybe something inside of me saying that it would be all right.

The night of the recital came, and the high school gymnasium was packed with parents, relatives and friends. I put Robby last in the program, just before I was to come up and thank all the students and play a finishing piece. I thought that any damage he might do would come at the end of the program, and I could always salvage his poor performance through my “Curtain Closer.”

Well, the recital went off without a hitch, the students had been practicing and it showed.  Then Robby came up on the stage. His clothes were wrinkled, and his hair looked as though he had run an egg beater through it. “Why wasn’t he dressed up like the other students?” I thought. “Why didn’t his mother at least make him comb his hair for this special night?’

Robby pulled out the piano bench, and I was surprised when he announced that he had chosen to play Mozart’s Concerto No.21 in C Major.  I was not prepared for what I heard next.   His fingers were light on the keys, they even danced nimbly on the ivories.  He went from pianissimo to fortissimo, from allegro to virtuoso; his suspended chords that Mozart demands were magnificent!  Never had I heard Mozart played so well by anyone his age.

After six and a half minutes, he ended in a grand crescendo, and everyone was on their feet in wild applause!!!  Overcome and in tears, I ran up on stage and put my arms around Robby in joy.

“I have never heard you play like that Robby, how did you do it?”  Through the microphone, Robby explained: “Well, Miss Honor, remember I told you that my Mom was sick?  Well, she actually had cancer and passed Away this Morning. And well… she was born deaf, so tonight was the first time she had ever heard me play, and I wanted to make it special.”

There wasn’t a dry eye in the house that evening.  As people from Social Services led Robby from the stage to be placed into foster care, I noticed that even their eyes were red and puffy.  I thought to myself then how much richer my life had been for taking Robby as my pupil.

No, I have never had a prodigy, but that night I became a Prodigy . . . of Robby. He was the teacher and I was the pupil, for he had taught me the meaning of perseverance and love and believing in yourself and maybe even taking a chance on someone, and you didn’t know why.

Robby was killed years later in the senseless bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City in April 1995.

 

Every hair!

Scripture: Matthew 10:30

“But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.” KJV

Many people ask, “Why would God care about me?” This question is usually based on Biblical doubt or suspicion that we are just an insignificant result of a big bang from a universe far – far away.

Our sun creates four-and-a-half million horsepower of energy each second. Therefore, if the sun impacted the earth, we would instantly burn up. So, God created a layer of filters to deliver less than one-tenth of one percent of the sun’s energy. Just so we could live here.

Our Milky Way Galaxy contains more than 100 billion stars. But our sun is just another star in the galaxy. The Hubble Space telescope website estimates there are hundreds of billions of galaxies in the universe. So that makes our sun and earth an insignificant grain of dust or two. Truly God’s power is awesome, and we cannot even begin to measure the energy around us — and then He ever so carefully delivers a relatively small amount of energy for me. So, does God care for me?

With this power and energy all around, it is interesting to note that God created a personal way to relate to us. He has written a unique genetic code just for each of us. If my genetic code would be printed out on paper it would take more than one million pages to describe just me. Another million to describe you! With 7.6 billion people in the world — that’s 7.6 billion separate and distinct million page — genetic codes. As you can see, we are each an encyclopedia of data that has been uniquely created by God.

The next time someone says to you, “Why would God care about me?” Answer: “Yes, He cares, and yes even your hairs are numbered — you are vitality important to Him. So important that He sent his Son to die on the cross for you and me so that when this life ends, we have a choice of spending eternity with Him.”

Prayer:

Father, thank you for caring about what I think and do down to the tiniest detail. Thank you for sending your son, Jesus Christ, to die for my sins so I can spend eternity with You in Heaven.

Thank You that You care so much about me, that You even know the number of hairs on my head.

In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ I thank You,

Amen!

Jacquie Johnson

419 Fund Team member

 

 

Words

Thoughts to Words:
Take care of our thoughts for they become words
Take care of your words for they become your behavior
Take care of your behavior for they become your character
Take care of your character for it becomes your destiny
Talmund

God says in Matthew 12:34-37:

34  O generation of vipers, how can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.

35  A good man out of the good treasure of the heart brings forth good things, and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things.

36  But I say unto you that every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account of it in the day of judgment.

37  For by your words you shall be justified, and by your words you shall be condemned.

Words are very important!  With words, we can either built up or tear down. Which are you doing today?

Proverbs 17:17 says, “A friend loves at all times.” Let’s show others love by the words we use.

Letter from Prison

January 8, 2019

Dear Precious Friends,

“For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory for beyond all comparison, while we look not at the tings which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” II Corinthians 4:17-18

“. . . Who delivered us from so great a peril of death, and will deliver us, He on whom we have set our hope. And He will yet deliver us, your also joining in helping us through your prayers, that thanks may be given by many persons on our behalf for the favor bestowed upon us through the prayers of many.” II Corinthians 1:10-11

I sincerely echo Paul’s sentiments and thankfulness to God for each one of you, for your prayers, support, encouragement and activism on my behalf.

I apologize I never made time to write to each of the 350 or so individuals who wrote letters on my behalf to Judge Arcara before my sentencing. I believe God miraculously used your letters to soften Judy Arcara’s heart to grant me bail, allowing me to be free pending my appeal to the Second Circuit. Plus, he set the fine at a mere $200 while the minimum recommendation in the guidelines was a $50,000 fine – with a maximum of $500,000! I was he first person he has allowed to walk out of his courtroom free on bail, I was told in a career that spanned nearly 40 years. It truly was a miracle. Thank you so much for your part!

Yet, here I am now in prison. I was ordered to self-surrender by Judge Arcara on December 5th of Ashland Federal Correctional Institution in Kentucky, once the Second Circuit District Court refused to overturn my conviction. I won’t go into the injustice of the decision. My lawyers are requesting certiori with the Supreme Court. [Denied January 10, 2019]

I know God has a purpose, and He is on our side. Kathie and I praise Him anyway, and we count it all joy, even though it is difficult – particularly for my dear wife, who I’ve never been apart from in our nearly 38 years of marriage for more than two nights.

The biggest blessing about being here in prison, however, is I have time to delve into God’s Word as never before. I am learning so very much!

One thing that has never really dawned on me to the [extent] I’m realizing now, is that we as believers are to anticipate with eagerness suffering for Christ’s sake. Jesus Himself said you and I must, when we desire to follow Him, take up our own cross.

In Matthew 24, Jesus promises to us that we will be delivered up to tribulation and even death . . . hated by nations for His name’s sake. Matthew 24:9-13

But there is a true blessing that comes from this (Luke 6:22-23). Se we as true believers are to embrace suffering for His name’s sale with all eagerness!

Indeed, suffering, is one of the main themes of he entire New Testament!  It is subject, expectation and realization that is constantly repeated over and over and over again!

God has truly answered many prayers!

Since December 5 was a Federal holiday due to President Bush’s funeral, the first 18 hours in prison I spent in the “shoe” – where they shut up all of the trouble makers. That was torturous for me. And also it was an entire week till I was allowed to communicate with my family.

But the next morning at 9:30, they transferred to me my permanent unit, which reminds me of a stark college dorm – without comfort or amenities. The only bars are on the outside windows.

God gave me what other inmates claim is the best cell in the unit, with only one of three (out of more than 50in our unit) “spring” bunk beds, in the best unit on the compound – the only one with air conditioning. He gave me a terrific cellmate who looks out for me, and three men to disciple. We’ve begun a prayer time every evening and will soon begin a Bible Study. Pray I may have God’s wisdom and insight. I feel very unqualified.

As a matter of fact, my cellmate told me shortly after he came to this prison, God gave him a vision that God would bring a cellmate who would be the catalyst for a new direction for his life.

So please, continue to pray for me regularly, for whatever might be my ministry here. And for Kathie, whatever ministry God is giving her while I am gone.

I thank God for you nearly every day!

Also, I’ve been writing a daily journal that should soon be available on line.  You’ll read my experiences and the observations God is revealing to me.

Please also pray for my son, William, who is suddenly responsible for running the business I began 40 years ago.

I am still expecting, in God’s perfect timing, to be released miraculously from prison. But it’ll be in a way in which God gets all the glory!  Please pray with us it will be sooner, rather than later.  Pray that in the meantime we will have peace, joy, patience and endurance!

This is a very difficult ordeal for all – especially for Kathie and William, and my other family.  Pray for Kathie’s health. She’s been in a lot of pain and is only sleeping two or three hours a night.

If you would like to send me a note of encouragement, make sure it’s on white paper with black or blue ink only, and in a white envelope.  Thank you everyone who has already written me.  Send them to:

Mr. Philip Zodhiates  18649-084

FCI Ashland

Federal Correctional Institution

P.O. Box 6001

Ashland, KY 41105

 

Kathie and William

PO Box 1842

Waynesboro, VA 22980

Again, you are very special to me. Thank you!

In His Service,

Philip

 

Last Call

Can you help Janalyn reach her goal of $6,000? She will be teaching English as a Second Language in South Asia next semester, and time is running out to get her support together.

Would you donate $25.00?  If 250 people would step up, we can help her reach her goal.

Janalyn is a junior at Liberty University, a Champion for Christ, who wants to make a difference in the lives of the people of South Asia.

Donate here: https://419fund.com/projects/tesl-internship/