Five-Fold Today - Story of Roni Bowers - A Testimony of Humbling - Are You Really Spotless? - Let Me Heal Your Damaged Emotions

April 30, 2001

Story of Roni Bowers

Why does it seem God answers some prayers and not others? How many times have you sat in church listening to all the praises and prayers being answered and you have wondered, "When is it my turn?" You are not trying to be angry, but you are, slightly, and you question God. "Where are you?" "Do you hear me?" "What have I done?" "What sin is unconfessed?" "Am I still being punished for some past sin?"

So what happens when God doesn't answer your prayers?

My prayer is that this story will help someone. If only one person would be helped, then it was worth the time, effort, and yes, even the pain I have known. There are many people who could write a very similar account, but opening the heart can be so painful.

I was reared in a military family. My father was in the Air Force for twenty years, so we moved a lot. I don't regret the lifestyle or the constant changes that my two brothers and I had to endure. I never had trouble making friends, though I never had a "bosom buddy" or a "kindred spirit" until my later years. Family, I came to realize, was and is very important. God's timing is always perfect. My parents were good, moral people but they knew something was missing in their lives. The week we moved into our home, following my dad's retirement, a pastor came to welcome us to the community. He invited us to church and, surprisingly, we all went the following Sunday. For the first time, we heard that Jesus Christ gave His life as a living sacrifice so that people could be forgiven, and could spend eternity with a righteous God. I vividly remember the night, several weeks later, that my dad got on his knees and asked Jesus Christ to be his Savior. I was twelve years old when I saw my need for a Savior. Our home was always open, especially for single GI's. My dad felt they needed a place to go for a good meal. My mom always did a great job of that, especially on Sundays. Not only did we have military personnel in our home, but also pastors, evangelists, and missionaries. What a wonderful opportunity it was to sit at the table with godly men and women and to be influenced by their lives. God sparked an interest in my heart for missions very early. At the age of thirteen, I knew I wanted to be a missionary. My parents allowed me to graduate from high school a year early so I could attend a Bible college. Looking back, it seems like I was very young to graduate at sixteen years of age and start college at seventeen, but God was in it all.

While attending Piedmont Bible College in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, I attended chapel programs and heard some wonderful speakers. Very early in my freshman year, a missionary challenged us to make a commitment in our dating lives. That day I made a vow to God that I would not date anyone unless he, too, wanted to be a missionary. Finally, a young man named Jim Bowers asked me to go roller skating. He was raised in Brazil by godly missionary parents and was planning to be a missionary. Over the course of time we became true friends. After about three years, college money ran out for Jim, so he decided to join the Army in order to take advantage of the GI bill. We took a break from college and on November 23, 1985, I became Mrs. James A. Bowers.

In January of 1987, the Army moved us to Mainz, Germany. We grew spiritually by leaps and bounds under the ministry of a missionary to the military. What a wonderful experience it was. After about two years, we began thinking about having a family. Months and months passed, which became year after year. We didn't give it much consideration since we both had to finish college and we thought it might be the Lord's will for us to wait.

We reentered college in the Fall of 1990. As a married couple we both had to work full time, as well as go to school. It was a very slow process but we were determined to finish. Seeing a specialist regarding child bearing was out of the question. Our last year of college was very difficult. My father-in-law died of cancer. It was a difficult time for all of us. I had never known what it meant to lose someone. I didn't know what it meant to grieve or to know how to comfort some-one who was grieving. Little did I know what was in store for me down the road.

In May of 1993 we graduated. Finally! What joy and relief we felt the day we walked together to receive our diplomas. That same summer we attended ABWE's Candidate Seminar and were appointed to Iquitos, Peru as missionaries. After many years of waiting, our dreams were finally coming true. Now we only lacked children in the home with whom to share those dreams.

We moved to Muskegon, Michigan and Calvary Church became our sending church. We were second generation missionaries at Calvary Church, because this church was Jim's parents' sending church in 1963. Our friends truly became our family. There were also several wonderful doctors, one who specialized in infertility. After many tests, we were finally told that we needed to think about adoption if we wanted children. There was no way we could have our own. It took some time to get used to the idea, to even come to the realization we would never have our own. We started the adoption papers in April of 1994 and were told it would be two to five years before we could adopt.

In the summer of that same year, Jim and I went to Peru to finalize all our plans to move there and become river houseboat missionaries. We were building our own boat and had plans to travel the Amazon River to reach many for Christ and to train national leaders to do the work of ministry.

We were quite surprised that November (1994) when we received a phone call stating that a baby boy had been born and the birth parents had chosen us to be the parents. We needed a name to put on the birth certificate in less than twenty-four hours. That's it! So with no warning and no planning ahead, we had a son. In March of 1995 we were off to the foreign field as a family. We spent nine months in Costa Rica studying the Spanish language and living with a Costa Rican family. The day we left for Peru was such a joyous day for us.

In March of 1997, with the help of three American construction crews, we began the construction of our houseboat, using parts shipped from the United States. By the end of October, we were finally on board. In July of 1997, in the midst of construction, I began feeling so tired and the work was getting to me. With the encouragement of a friend, I did something I had wanted to do for years; I bought a home pregnancy test. I took it the next morning and it came back positive. The emotion that came over me was enormous. I ran into the bedroom to tell Jim. He encouraged me to not get my hopes up until blood work was done. We went to the hospital and the blood test was positive. We were elated. I flew back, with my son, to the United States to see a doctor. No chances were being taken.

After many tests, everything appeared to be normal and I returned to Peru three weeks later with all kinds of maternity clothes. The following Friday I was encouraged to lie down by one of the coworkers. No sooner had I laid down than my water broke. I was only ten weeks into the pregnancy. Praise the Lord, one of the people in the group helping us with the construction was a lady and she knew what to do. After about five hours of labor in the hospital, I lost our baby. Despair is the only word to describe how I felt. I knew that I had to cling to God. He reminded me of Psalm 23 and I trusted Him to "restore my soul."

I couldn't understand all the emotions, the deep depression I was feeling. What kind of a Christian was I? After months of struggles, I realized I was putting the baby I wanted before my relationship with God. I finally realized what I was doing and begged God to forgive me. More than anything, I wanted my relationship with Him back. God has not taken away the desire for a baby, but He has helped me put my priorities in order.

Now I choose to trust God fully. He is in control; He knows what is best. He doesn't owe me anything, rather I owe Him everything. When we as believers get to heaven, we won't have to ask, "why?" It will be worth it all.

"For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." Where is your heart? Where are your treasures?

Jim & Roni Bowers adopted Charity, their second child, in December 2000.


This is the Roni Bowers that was killed when her plane was shot down by the Peruvians in S.A. last Friday.

It was written by her more than a year ago. ~The Story of Roni Bowers~
By Veronica (Roni) Bowers

forwarded by Ruth Benson to the AP list

A Testimony of Humbling

Jim Rinker

To the Lords Army of Servants,

I have a personal testimony that I believe is a word the Lord wants to release to His children.

The foundation of any ministry that we are called to will only be as strong as the love that we have for the Lord Jesus Christ and for those we are called to minister to. The evidence of how diligent we have been in allowing the Holy Spirit to work in our lives to weed and prune us so that we will bear the fruit of love is manifest in the heat of battle. Rick Joyner in his book "The Call" terms this "quality of our camp". The strength of any army in battle is directly proportional to the quality of it's camp. How was the time in resting spent? Was it wasted or was it used to it's fullness to further purge us that we would produce more fruit.

I have been learning that the only thing that will sustain us in the heat of battle is His love, both His love for us as well as His love for His people. Standing firm in the face of opposition and perseverance through difficult circumstances for the sake of others is a clear sign that His love is being manifest in our lives.

I had been involved in a local church for 3 years in the area I live from 1997 to 2000. Last August I walked away from that local body bitter, angry, disillusioned and discouraged. How did I fall so far? How did these things gain foothold in my life?

Up until the time of my walking away, I had walked in increasing knowledge and wisdom in the Lord's ways. God had been feeding me and giving me prophetic insight into the "mysteries of the kingdom" and instructing me in His ways. There was an increase in the prophetic anointing on my life as well. The Lord was using me in many instances to give words of encouragement and in general speak life into the lives of many.

If I can sum up knowledge, wisdom, and the anointing (gifts of the Spirit) it would be "the keys of the kingdom". Those keys were given to me to first and foremost unlock the prison cell I was in. Once free from my own delusions I was then given limited responsibility to begin to share with others to give them these "keys" so they could free themselves.

Those who hold the keys of the kingdom WILL be opposed. The opposition can be seen as a sign and used as a great sharpening stone or it can be used as a stumbling block in our pathway. The choice of how we are going to use that stone is ours. That stone reveals how well we camped. How much of His love is actually a apart of our lives. It also reveals hidden motives. It says in Romans that ALL things work out for good to those who love Him. Opposition can be a pruning tool to bring forth more fruit if we recognize and receive it as a pruning tool.

The keys of the kingdom are used to free us from our prison cells. They are not what sustain us. His love sustains us. In the midst of opposition I grew weaker and weaker. I became more and more distracted by focusing on the spiritual forces working through others (totally unknown to them) that were trying to stop me rather than on those I was called to give the keys of the kingdom to. What became manifest (not understood until months later) was my lack of love for Jesus AND HIS PEOPLE.

His love NEVER fails. The reason I failed is because I was lacking in His love. I ignored the warning signs the Lord posted on the pathway for me to see if I would have not ignored them.

One of the warning signs is to focus on the forces of wickedness in high places rather than on the Lord Himself. The enemy "suckered" me into fighting a battle that neither you or I are called to fight. We are called to sit with Christ "high above" all principalities and powers and not cast them down. That time will come but it certainly is not yet that time. The call is not to cast down but rather to overcome.

What this means is that those powers still exists, but they do not have authority over our lives. A defensive end is called to sack the quarterback, not fight with the offensive linemen trying to stop him. The defensive end is looking to "go beyond" the lineman. If we get no further than the lineman, he has done his job in protecting his quarterback. If the enemy can get us to fight him instead of going to the prisoners who are requesting assistance we will fail to free them.

The second warning sign was my reaction to what I saw. Jesus saw all things as they were yet was able to stand knowing all things. What sustained Him was His love for us. I was given vision because I asked for it. Many others are given vision because they too have asked for it. Standing under the weight of the "anointing" and not being consumed by it is quite another matter.

The amount of love I had for God's people was manifest by the anointing. I knew the spiritual truth that is in Ezekiel about an exceedingly great army that would be risen up out of the driest of bones. I lacked the patience and perseverance to stand in the midst of those dry bones, however, to see them risen up. I became distracted by their dryness.

I became offended by the condition of the army. That offense can stop us from ministering to the ones we are sent to heal and free. Our offense manifests our expectations, which if are dillusions will hinder us.

The third warning sign was trying to make blind people see what you see. Jesus said in Matthew 13 that "to you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom but to those without it is not given". Blindness is directly proportional to discipleship.

His disciples were granted vision because they chose to follow Jesus while those who were not His disciples were not granted that vision. Vision first needed to be imparted. Agreement comes as we all see as He sees. There is no disagreement when we look as a ship and say "that's a ship". We disagree because we do not see as He sees.

Now vision is a wonderful thing but if it is not used to free others then it will be used to judge others. Seeing that a religious spirit controls the vast majority of the churches today is one thing. Being able to impart vision to others that they may see as well is quite another. Knowledge is power. It is power to rule over or it is power to free. It is also the power to let someone have their free will to choose. To choose to seek Him on their own or choose to not seek Him and remain as they are.

Vision is given to all who ask! Love will allow someone to choose. To choose delusions or choose life without being offended. Offense = distraction!

It says in the book of Acts that Jesus instructed the disciples not to depart Jerusalem but wait for the POWER. That word power is not "strength". It is dunamas. Now it means dynamo and most equate that with strength but a dynamo is a self sustaining mechanism that once going requires no outside power source for it to run. It is deemed "inherent power".

Inherent power is the power of REPRODUCTION. It is the power to reproduce the life of Christ in you in others. The disciples were instructed to WAIT until they received the power of reproduction. But locked in this word power is love for reproduction does not happen unless an act or manifestation of love occurs. Meditate on this.

Now, I will sum all of this information up. The gifts of the Spirit are given to free ourselves and others from our prison cells of delusion that we may worship the Lord in Spirit and in truth. Possessing the anointing is possessing the keys to the prison cells.

The keys are given to those who ask the Lord and seek Him. He then sends His servants to impart the keys so the prisoner can free themselves. Those who hold the keys to unlock the prison cells of those held captive will come under direct attack by the prison guards.

To walk in the face of direct opposition of the enemy and persevere the mocking of other prisoners that have not yet asked for freedom we need to posses His love for the prisoners. Our ability to stand in the midst of this great battle is directly proportional to the amount of unfailing love we posses.

Now, to those who are being given spiritual authority to go and free the captives, I exhort you in the name of Jesus to listen to my words. I stand as a living example of how one who is given the keys to the kingdom can fail in their mission and fall on the battlefield.

If any of these warning signs ring true in your life, take time to camp and ask the Lord to impart His love to you for His people. Do not justify yourself!

You will be able to BIBLICALLY justify yourself as I did. This is not a matter of who is right and who is wrong. It is a matter of life and death. It is a matter of learning responsibility. The walk IS difficult. If the walk is not difficult for you then you're probably not on the right path. But in the face of difficulties and opposition is sustenance. That sustaining factor is His love.

May the Lord Bless You and Sustain You in the Midst of the Ever Increasing Darkness!


His Light Shines!

Yea, and all that will live Godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of Whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus." 2 Timothy 3:12-15

Are You Really Spotless?

Thomas Lawrence

A word from the Lord to those who call themselves His church but continue to live for themselves...

Tell My people I am coming and they MUST be clean - they MUST be clean - they MUST be clean. For I am coming for a spotless bride. THEY MUST BE CLEAN! If you can't give it all, you can't have any of Me. For the day is coming, the great day of My wrath. None who are not of Me will escape My wrath.

Do you carry unforgiveness in your heart? Then you are NOT spotless.
Do you carry jealousy in your heart? Then you are NOT spotless.
Do you carry pride in you heart? Then you are NOT spotless.
Do you carry greed in your heart? Then you are NOT spotless.
Do you carry envy in your heart? Then you are NOT spotless.

I am coming for a spotless bride. You must surrender all to Me. There can be nothing left for I will not be a part of adultery. It's ALL of Me or NONE of Me. You must choose. Do not delay - your days are numbered. Make no mistake, I am a Sovereign God and I am a Just God. I must judge all men equally. There can be no bargaining with Me. I love you, but I must be Just.

Do you not know that you were bought with the price of My Son? I cannot buy only part of you. I must have ALL of you or NONE of you. I love you, but I MUST be Just.

Will you bear My mark or the mark of another? Only those who bear My mark may enter into My reward - all others will be cast into outer darkness. Will you choose this day? No choice is the WRONG choice. Come to Me this day. I long for you. Come to Me. Come to Me. Come to Me. I long for you. Don't delay. Choose this day.

Let Me Heal Your Damaged Emotions

Olivia Reitz

Why are you cast down, O my inner self? And why should you moan over me and be disquieted within me? Hope in God AND wait expectantly for Him, for I shall yet praise Him, my Help and my God. Ps 42:5

Come, come to Me and let Me heal your damaged emotions. When no one is available, not even the ones closest to your heart, who will understand - there is the One who is "always" available to you.

When you feel everything that you do or say is wrong, when anxiety, inadequacy, inferiority, says "I am no good, no one could possibly love me or understand me" - Remember, I AM HERE. Talk with Me. I am always here to listen and to understand what your heart is saying. For who loves you more than I do? And who could possibly understand you more than I can?

The enemy seeks to catch you off guard, when you try to explain your feelings to someone and you feel rejected by them. You are in a war ... you've taken on the big attacks and you have been winning, but Satan is like a sniper, waiting in ambush - picking you off when you least expect it. You can be feeling on top of the world, strong in Me, but one little comment can send you into a tailspin. It happened to the best of My saints of old, and it happens to My saints now!

Satan is clever and dangerous. My Beloved, it's not his power that will get through to you, for he has no power, for the power comes through My Son. - It's his trickery and his deceptiveness. He knows how to exploit your weaknesses bringing on discouragement, failure, fear, doubt and guilt - seeking to paralyze you and ultimately My potential for your life. He seeks to ruin your relationships, sabotaging your service to Me.

So, come, My Beloved, come to Me, receive my listening ear and heart, receive My understanding, receive My unconditional forgiveness. Receive !!!

Olivia Reitz

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