Do You Fear Missing God's Voice?

Many times people are afraid of trying to hear God speak because they are afraid that they will hear "wrong."

The truth is there are times you will hear wrong. There are times you'll hear the voice of your own flesh or you will hear a counterfeit spirit trying to get you off course.  (This is why we test the spirits.)

Expecting to hear the voice of God perfectly would be like expecting a toddler to stand up and start walking without ever falling down. We learn through the falling down. We learn what not to do next time. Therefore, if the devil can get you to fear not hearing God perfectly - he can keep you from learning to walk in the spirit. Nobody does it perfectly from the first step. But if you do it enough times - you'll soon begin to walk and then run.

Hearing the voice of God takes the faith of a child. Your Father isn't disappointed when you miss his voice - he's thrilled that you tried!

Don't be so focused when you fail. Make the necessary corrections, get up and try again!

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A common theme with those who struggle to hear God’s voice is that they haven’t learned to hear with their spirit instead of their soul.

Our soul is made up of our mind, will, and emotion. But our spirit is breathed into us by God at conception. God gives each person a slice of his image, His essence. Our spirit is the place where we have a relationship with God, not our souls.

John 4:24 “God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth."

We hear God and worship Him with our spirits. Many Christians have been taught to lead their lives with their soul... but that is not how God meant for us to live. We’re supposed to let our spirits be the engineer of our life-train.

The soul is our “natural man.” When we let this part of ourselves lead our lives, we are essentially living out of our intellect.

Since God is a Spirit, he doesn’t commune with us through our intellect. God speaks to us through our spirits.

1 Corinthians 2:14 “The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned.”

So....If you want to hear God’s voice better simply ask for your spirit to come forward and be the engineer of your train instead of your soul. This takes practice. Especially if you have shoved your spirit back in the caboose for a long period of time. Most people who struggle with being in “control” have trouble trusting their spirits because they trust intellect more.  But we are to be led by the Spirit!

Romans 8:14 “For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.”

You can do this!! Ask the Holy Spirit to show you how to let your spirit lead!

 

MIND CONTROL AND HOW IT WORKS

We have been fighting mind control since the Garden of Eden.  Every single person alive deals with mind control every single day!  We are either slaves to mind control, the ones doing the mind control, or fighting to stay free from mind control.

Mind control is all around us.  It's in the media.  It's in the movies and television we watch.  It's in the church.  And sometimes mind control is within our families.

The most obvious example of mind control is when the serpent deceived Eve.  He followed a pattern.  He planted doubt about God's goodness.  He weakened her trust in the truth.  And this opened the door and allowed the serpent to plant the lie he wanted her to believe.  Eve consented to the serpent's lies and then he led her to eat the forbidden fruit.

The one thing the Sanhedrin (leaders of the synagogue) hated the most about Jesus is that their mind control didn't work on Him.  They couldn't get Jesus to doubt who He was.  They couldn't weaken His trust in the truth.  Because they had no access to His mind - they couldn't plant their own narrative within Him that really He should be bowing to them.  Jesus would not consent.

Hear this VERY important truth:

NO ONE CAN CONTROL YOU WITHOUT YOUR CONSENT!

Today the enemy largely uses groupthink to control our minds.  We want to feel like we are part of a tribe, it makes us feel safe.  But most tribes are centered around a thought pattern which all tribe members are required to adhere to.  You risk being ostracized from the tribe if you deviate from the group narrative.

As Believers, we voluntarily subscribe to Jesus's tribe.  His narrative is love (grace AND truth).  It's a free will tribe.  Come or go if you please - but Jesus will always be the foundation of what the tribe does.

We make it our goal to RENEW our mind according to Christ and His ways.  He leads us into ALL truth.  Any other tribe (even our family) who attempts to get us to doubt who we are in Christ - is using mind control.

We consent to mind control if we allow people to cause us to doubt who Jesus is - or who we are in Him.  We consent to mind control when we let someone else take the place of "Master" of our lives.  We consent to mind control when we go along with the group in order to be accepted.

"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will." Romans 12:2

May God strengthen us in His truth and renew our minds as we stand against MIND CONTROL!

Freedom in Obedience - Guest Post by Michelle Daugharthy

I'm so pleased to introduce my friend Michelle Daugharthy to you.  Michelle is a beautiful person inside and out.  She has allowed God to take her mess and create a beautiful masterpiece from her life.  She is a wonderful wife, mother, and actress!  She acts in commercials and small films AND she writes!  Enjoy this piece of wisdom that she has written for us.

I am going to say something that may sound counter-intuitive.

There is FREEDOM walking in obedience.

We were actually created this way.  We crave safe boundaries; it creates security.  A child will continue to push against any boundary you put in place to see if you really care enough to mean it.

“Yes! If you don’t play in the street, then you are FREE to stay alive! That is how much I love you!”

“Yes! If you are home by curfew and do not go to your boyfriend’s house alone, then you are FREE to not be burdened with the guilt that weighs from sexual sin! That’s how much I love you!” We can often fear that if we agree to walk in obedience to the Lord, He will ask us to give up something we love or do something really hard.

And He might. BUT, trust me, if He asks you to give it up, it is because there is something better in store!

A few years after my divorce, I was dating a man long distance for almost two years. It was a challenging relationship. He was a good, Christian man, but had some deep struggles with being OCD and over-critical that were less than life-giving in our relationship.  We broke up a few times, and each time I felt like we were supposed to get back together. He had so many of the qualities I longed for in a husband.

The thing is, he had a reeeeaaallly hard time committing to marriage because he was afraid he would regret his choice later. I always went back and just tried to “work harder” on our relationship. The deeply implanted wounds and issues were not healed, and things got very bleak and hard again.

When I was praying about what to do, I felt the Lord ask me, “If you knew I had something better for you around the corner, would you give him up?” I actually did not have to think too long…”Yes, Lord. I will do that and trust you.”

So I broke it off for good. He pleaded and pleaded with me to give him another chance, but I calmly held my ground. It was hard. I gave something up I really wanted. And it hurt. But I also felt peace in the midst of that because I knew I obeyed God. I felt more free out of that relationship! I was even able to get to a place of being ok if I did not get married again because I knew the Lord was enough and He was taking care of me.  Six months later, I met a man whom I was pretty smitten with right away.

Friends, God is SO good.

He knew what I needed in a mate, and I believe He had this man in mind for me. (God just had to perform a minor miracle and move him back to our city!) Long story short, we married about 2 years after we met. Now we have been married almost 9 years and have added two kids to our family, in addition to my daughter I have from my previous marriage. Is it perfect? No.  Do we sometimes struggle?  Yes. But it is GOOD.  So good.  And don’t we all want what is good, the best for us?

God is a good father and knows how to give good gifts – the best gifts!

That is what He loves to do! In fact, His word tells us how He likes to give gifts: “ …which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!”  (Matthew 7:9-11.)

Freedom does not mean just getting to do what we want.  Freedom is defined as the state of being at liberty rather than in confinement.  Friends, sin leads to confinement, to bondage….to slavery.  Obedience is for our protection, and for our promise for freedom!

Walking in obedience to God will always lead to greater joy, peace, and freedom! Will you follow and obey Him today?

People Get Ready - LEARNING TO INTERPRET DREAMS

One of the signs of the last days is that God is going to pour our His Spirit and we will see signs and wonders.  He is going to speak to us through dreams and visions.

Joel 2:28-29 I will pour out my Spirit on all people.

Your sons and daughters will prophesy,

    your old men will dream dreams,

    your young men will see visions.

Even on my servants, both men and women,

    I will pour out my Spirit in those days.

One of the skills that the Body of Christ needs to be more skilled at is the interpretation of Dreams and Visions.

For instance, did you know that spiders in dreams usually indicate that you are believing a lie.  Did you know that vehicles usually stand for momentum in your personal life or ministry. Also, different vehicles mean different things.  Did you know that it is incredibly important to pay attention to numbers and colors?

Whenever your dream of your hair - it indicates something about your "thinking."   Teeth stand for wisdom.  Teeth falling out mean you are losing wisdom.  Planes crashing usually mean a warning for large organizations (such as churches).  Any kind of crash in a dream is a warning that someone is in danger, and corrections need to be made.

The meaning of the color red can be positive or a negative.  We must have discernment from the Holy Spirit.  If it is a positive color it means wisdom, anointing, power, or the blood of Jesus.  If it has a negative connotation it means anger, war, or hatred.

Numbers usually correlate with something in scripture.  For instance, 444 can mean the glory of God will be revealed because of Ezekiel 44:4.  Seven is the perfect number. Eleven is the number of chaos.  When eleven turns to twelve it means God is bringing in His government and making things straight. (Remember that the eleven apostles had to became twelve before Pentecost was poured out.)

Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego --- not only relied on the Holy Spirit to give them interpretations, they also STUDIED to understand God's language.

It really helps to know some of these symbols as I minister to people because God can speak to me more quickly because I know what the symbols and colors mean.  If I see a "bat" over a person - I know that someone has cursed them with witchcraft.  If I see a labyrinth inside a person's soul - I know they need to be delivered from a co-dependent cycle.

As Believers, we must be better equipped to interpret Dreams and Visions - because IT'S. ABOUT. TO. GET. REAL!!!

My ministry team and I have created an app that goes right on your smart phone.  You can look up over a thousand different symbols using the app and you can begin to learn God's language for yourself.  I have included some pictures of what the app looks like.  It costs just 99 cents.  It is available for both iOS and Android.

We used a biblical basis for writing the dream symbol meanings.  As we mentor others it is incredibly helpful to have this list right on our phone!

Try it out.  Equip yourself to interpret.  It's time to go deeper!

It's time to be READY for the outpouring of God's Spirit.  There is a lot of work to do and we've got some catching up to do.

I invite you to purchase the .99 CENT app for iOS here...

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/christian-dream/id939628240?mt=8

Or you can purchase it for Android HERE...

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.christian_dream

Let us know if you have any questions.  We want to equip you!

The Bride of Christ is Stuck in the Nineties

We tease my husband a lot because of the mullet haircut he had in the 90s.  My sons laughed pretty hard when they saw his senior picture.  They don't understand...but we were cool back then.  We married in 1993.  I had teased bangs and a pouffy dress, lots of sequins and pearls.  I used the colors "mauve and teal."  It was cool!   ...back then anyway.

A few mornings ago, I had a vision of being dressed as a bride.  I knew that my bridal gown was not up to date at all.  I had a huge veil that wrapped around the front of my head I had teased hair and there were ruffles on my dress. I looked in the mirror and was a bit horrified that I looked like Rachel from the TV show Friends.

I asked the Lord why I was seeing this vision… (Honestly, I was a little bit fearful to hear the interpretation LOL! Since I grew up in the 80s/90s I think I have a fear of teased hair!) After a bit of prayer, I heard the Lord say, “My Bride is stuck in the pattern of the 90s.”

As always, when the Lord speaks one little sentence can bring a tsunami of understanding.  The three-dimensional understanding that I heard in my Spirit was that the Bride had not really updated herself since the 90s.  She was still stuck in the paradigm of what the Lord did twenty-five years ago.

Twenty-five years ago – we were learning all about prayer and intercession and our identity in Christ.  We were reading “What’s so Amazing about Grace” by Phillip Yancey.  We were mesmerized by the “Left Behind” series.  Joyce Meyer had given us “Battlefield of the Mind.”   Tommy Tenney taught us to be “God Chasers.”  Stormie Omartian taught us the power of a Praying Spouse.  And Jim Cymbala gave us a “Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire” for intercession.

But really - for the most part, we haven’t moved forward since then.

There are parts of the Body of Christ that have focused on updating themselves.  But large portions of the Bride are still stuck at the “Battlefield of the Mind.”

Friends – Jesus is coming back for an “up to date” Bride. He’s moved on from the 90s – but we have not. God has moved on to prophecy and the Five Fold ministry.  He has moved beyond pastors and teachers and evangelists – He has installed the apostles and prophets, and most of the Church has not noticed.

God has moved on from simple intercession to deliverance and spiritual warfare.  These are all things that the Body of Christ is lagging behind on.  We must begin to update our “spiritual clothing.”

There are difficulties coming in which we need for our Bridal dress to also be our armor.  There is no more time for ruffles and a big veil.  We must get down to business and get equipped with the powers of the age to come. 

These are the last days – and we are not ready for the fight we are about to experience.

After the Lord said, “My Bride is stuck in the pattern of the 90s,”  I heard a scripture verse in my spirit: Hosea 4:6. It was a confirmation of the vision and interpretation I was hearing…“my people are destroyed from a lack of knowledge…because they have rejected knowledge…”

A large portion of the bride has rejected the Five Fold ministry.  They have rejected the apostles and prophets.  They have rejected deliverance and effective spiritual warfare.  They are now woefully unprepared for the coming of the King, and the last battle that looms before His coming.

I know that my readers may feel helpless about this situation because their church has chosen not to “update” their knowledge and understanding in these areas.  You may feel powerless in being equipped in these areas…but you are not. The Lord said to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling.  When you stand before the throne - “My church did not show me how to become ready for the coming of the Bridegroom”  - will not be an acceptable excuse for not getting ready.  There are resources available to you.  You must train yourself to be ready!  In fact, we are behind in getting prepared. 

BUT GRACE…

Grace can bring you up to date.  You need to call on the Lord for an update.  Ask Him to show you how to download an update from heaven.  I am going to list some resources below that will help you as well.  If your church is not preparing you and equipping you with tools to be victorious over your enemy, then you need to do it yourself!  No more excuses!  I am here to help you and encourage you too!

If you have not followed me on Facebook, I encourage you to do so.  I release words and videos from time to time that I do not release on this blog.  I want to equip you!  I want to make you ready for Christ.  I will do everything I can to help you understand the powers of the age to come.

I welcome your questions.  I welcome your engagement.  It is my calling to make the Bride ready… how can I help you?

I’m going to be putting more videos on Youtube soon. You can find some of them by clicking this link…

If you have not yet read my book “The Battle for Peace: Who is your master?”  I encourage you to get it!  In it, I explain how to increase your emotional peace by examining what is on the throne of your life. CLICK HERE.

I also have a new book out called Maturing in Christ: Keys to Overcome.  I have expanded my original ebook to include several more keys to be set free from the bondage of anxiety, fear, powerlessness, bitterness, people-pleasing and so much more!  KNOW how to be set free and how to set others free!  It’s a MUST!  CLICK HERE to purchase.

I also encourage anyone who is trying to equip themselves to get this book by John Eckardt.  It is a powerful tool to overcome demonic attacks!  CLICK HERE.

If you are ready for a MAJOR update in your spiritual walk - I recommend Rick Joyner's book The Final Quest.  It is a jump into the deep end of the pool! CLICK HERE

ALSO, here are a few links to important understandings about the Five Fold Ministry, Deliverance AND Spiritual Armor:

Understanding the Five Fold Ministry CLICK HERE

Understanding Deliverance CLICK HERE

Learning to wear your Armor CLICK HERE

The Urgency for Believers to be Equipped with the Powers of the Age to Come

As a watchman intercessor in this nation, I can see something that is about to break forth that the Body of Christ is not ready for.

The battle of the ages, between the Kingdom of God and the kingdom of darkness is about to be sprung upon us in a deeper way than we have ever experienced.  And hear me when I say…  THE CHURCH IS NOT READY!

The battle that is about to be released is a spiritual battle for the ages.  It is the one before the return of the Lord.  The Final Battle.

The devil knows his time is short and he is pulling out all of the stops in order to see God’s people broken, devoured, and full of fear.  There is an evil that is being released that most of the Body of Christ has no understanding about how to fight.

Spirits of insanity, false signs and wonders, demonic manifestations, persecution, torment unto death, and anti-Christs that are VERY good counterfeits are awaiting their evil master’s signal to “go.”  When that happens, many good Bible Believing Christians are going to be carried away as prisoners of war.  If the Body of Christ does not soon become equipped with the powers of the age to come – they will be overcome by the darkness and taken out of commission for the Final Battle.

(I do not mean they will lose their salvation.  I mean they will lose their ability to fight in the spiritual war that rages, because they will be overcome with fear or with deception.)

It’s not too late to learn about the “Powers of the Age to Come.”

Have you ever heard a sermon preached about that?  The phrase is coined by the writer of Hebrews in Chapter 6 verse 5.  He speaks of Believers tasting the POWERS OF THE AGE TO COME.

It seems that in the 21st century very few of us have experienced these powers and yet, we see them sprinkled throughout the Word of God.

Paul defines them a little further in 2 Corinthians 10:4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.

The powers of the age to come make no sense to this world – they are spiritual weapons.  Let’s look at a few.

The enemy’s armies were routed by the worship of God’s people. (2 Chronicles 20)

Water and food can be ‘healed.’ (Ex. 15 and 2 Kings 4)

Moses parted the waters.  (Ex. 14)

Body’s healed.   (Acts 3)

Stephen saw heaven opened as he was being stoned.  (Acts 7)

Phillip was transported from one place to another.  (Acts 8)

Peter’s shadow fell on someone and they were healed.  (Acts 5)

The people were led by visions and dreams.  (Acts 10)

They cast out demons. (Matt. 8)

The dead were raised.  (Luke 9, Mark 5)

All of these things kind of blow my mind… Because I have only seen a few of these “powers” happen with my own eyes.

We don’t know how to access most of these.  Not many of us have the faith for these things.  And yet – they are the very things we are going to need in this Final Battle.

Recently, I had a vision that I was a prisoner (along with many others) held captive in a cell in the wall of a Roman Colosseum. We each had windows to see into the arena. The lions would be released against our brother and sister Christians and they would be mauled to death.

I felt powerless. I asked the Lord to renew my mind that I was powerless against this and I renounced the lie that I couldn’t do anything about it. The Holy Spirit spoke to me and said, “You think you are powerless because you think you have to fight this with your intelligence – but this is a spiritual war and the weapons you hold are not carnal – they are spiritual. You have a sword that could end this.”

The vision immediately flipped to me standing before the lion. I took my sword and aimed for its throat and I said, “You will not kill my brothers and sisters anymore!” My sword cut deep enough that it severed the throat of the lion and it bled out on the ground. Then I began handing out swords to my fellow Believers and they began to use them on the lions and pretty soon we were victorious! 

END OF THE VISION

It was a spiritual war we were fighting. I had assumed it wasn’t.

I feel a bit helpless watching Christian bakers and florists who stick by their religious convictions and football coaches who pray get picked off by evil lions and mauled to death. I feel helpless with all of the yelling going on about racism and division and hate. But I think the mistake we’ve been making is assuming that we have to fight the war with the right words and worldly intelligence.

We don’t.

We must stop arguing with the weapon called “intelligence” and begin warring with the authority of the Lord and cut off the spiritual lions who are devouring the truth of God’s Kingdom!

This is how we use the powers of the age to come. (Hebrews 6) We use our God-given authority, bought for us on the cross, to come against powers and principalities that are attempting to devour our nation and our brothers and sisters in Christ. Let us all use our swords together and cut off this attempt by the enemy to take out our nation.

By faith, raise your sword and repeat after me, “By the blood of Jesus, I cut off the head of the lion who is attempting to divide our nation. I cut off the head of the lion who is devouring my fellow Believers. You WILL be silenced, in the name that is above all names – JESUS!”

This is how we begin to use the Powers of the Age to Come!

“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD rises upon you.  See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the LORD rises upon you and his glory appears over you.  Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.”   Is 60:1-3

How to Access Living Water on a Daily Basis

As Believers, there are times we have experienced Living Water.  It's that feeling of being refreshed in our souls or the feeling of a weight being lifted off of your shoulders.  This is the process of being set free... it allows Living Water to spring up in our souls and brings us LIFE!

We first hear about "Living Water" from Jesus in John 4.

Jesus spoke to the woman at the well and made a really big promise – He said, “I can give you a drink of water that will never make you thirst again?  The water I give you will become a part of you and it will spring up from within and lead to eternal life.”

When the Samaritan woman gave permission for the Lord to give her the Living Water- what is the first thing He did?

He gave her the TRUTH.

He opened her eyes to her broken condition of insecurity and sin. He pointed out that she had five husbands and was living with a man that was not her husband.  So what did the Samaritan woman do?  She changed the subject.

Isn’t that what most of us do when we are confronted with the lies we are living in?

We change the subject – because facing the TRUTH is hard.

But Jesus did not relent.  In His ever-so-sneaky way, He continued to give the Samaritan woman what she asked for – He continued to give her the TRUTH.

He revealed to her that she was actually speaking with the true Messiah, the Christ they had been waiting for.  The person we know as the TRUTH!

The Samaritan woman is so overcome with the Living Water that has just been released to her that she goes to share the whole story with her town and they come out to also get the Living Water.

There is a simple, yet profound understanding in these passages about how to get Living Water.

Living Water begins with the TRUTH and ends with LIFE.

Because it is the TRUTH that sets us free. The freedom we receive from the TRUTH brings us LIBERTY in our souls and opens the way for the River of God to be released in us.

Lies and falsehoods block the Spirit of God from dwelling within us.  We must constantly be desiring the TRUTH in all things.  We must constantly be searching for the TRUTH about our own hearts and souls.  God desires for us to worship Him in Spirit and Truth – this means that if we are worshiping Him in our flesh or if we are worshiping Him with false motives – we are not truly receiving Living Water.

If we want Living Water we must understand that it comes from the Spirit and it is full of TRUTH!

A very simple tool to begin to clear your soul of falsehoods is called the “Uprooting Lies” tool.

It is a way to process the lies you are believing about yourself or about God.  When you process these lies by asking the Lord for the TRUTH – He gives you Living Water and sets your soul free!

It works like this:  (Begin with KNOWING that you are a child of God and that He desires to give you Living Water.  Begin with FAITH!)

1. Ask in prayer:  Father God are there any lies I’m believing?  (listen quietly for the voice of the Lord.)

2. Renounce the lie by saying out loud:  I renounce the lie that ________.

For example: “I renounce the lie that You, Father God, are cold and distant.”

3. Ask: Father God what is Your truth?

4. Declare the truth out loud.

For example:  I declare the truth that You love me and want to hold me like a father holds his child.

5. RECORD this conversation on paper so that you can go back and review it later.  After getting a revelation of the truth, you’ll need to go back and begin renewing your mind with this new truth! 

After you use this tool a few times it will begin to be a spring that bubbles up in you on a daily basis. You’ll recognize that a specific thought is a lie and then you’ll take it to the Lord for His TRUTH instead.  And...Voila!

The Living Water is TRUTH that brings us wholeness.

How to Uproot Lies in Your Heart

How to Love People Without Strings Attached

One of the hardest things we have to learn as Believers is how to love people with no strings attached.

It's hard to love people when they don't love you back. It's hard to love people even when they desert you. It's really hard loving the gossips and slanderers without giving them an evil eye and hating them in your heart. And it's hard to love the people who use you for their own gain without storing up rage in your heart.

Loving these people requires a "Jesus kind of love."  

Jesus loved the people and even His enemies with no strings attached.  He didn't require them to wash His feet. He didn't force anyone to follow Him.  He didn't hate them in His heart when they nailed His hands and feet to a cross.

At one point, thousands of people left Jesus's ministry because His preaching got too hard for them to accept. (John 6:66)

But Jesus didn't get mad and think "you people owe me! I healed you! I fed you! I delivered you!"  He let them go and celebrated the ones who stayed.  Jesus wants willing followers.  He wants us to know that He will love us, even if we walk away for a season.  He also wants us to love others like that!

Jesus didn't demand honor like the Sanhedrin did.  Instead, Jesus knelt down in love and honored his friends by washing their feet....even ones He knew were fair weather friends.  Peter still got his feet washed by Jesus, the night Peter betrayed Him, no strings attached.

Jesus loves you right where you are at.  He may not be pleased with everything that you are doing - but you are free to sin or not.  Even then, you cannot make Jesus not love you.

As Believers, we are called to become like Christ.  We are called to love as He did... this means we love others without expecting anything in return.

If people want to walk away from a relationship with us, we let them go, and we do not demand that they stay.  We put the relationship in the hands of grace, and we allow the other person to have free will 

(even if those people are family members).

We lay down our hurt, forgive them, and let them go.  Pride demands an answer or an apology.  Humility says they owe you nothing.  

When people who have hurt you, come back and truly repent - love opens an avenue to restoration.  Jesus gently restored Peter after he fell. And 50 days later 3000 people gave their lives to Christ because of Peter.

The prodigal son's father had no strings attached.  The prodigal still paid a price because he had already spent his inheritance.  But his father RAN out to meet him, an example of our Heavenly Father's love.

The brother of the prodigal had strings attached to his love.  He demanded his own kind of justice.  But that is not the way of Jesus and therefore, it cannot be our way either.

Perfect love casts out fear because there are no strings attached. Jesus's kind of love is without condition.  Now that doesn't mean we don't use wisdom and it doesn't mean we are doormats, Jesus certainly wasn't. But we allow people to come and go in our lives without forcing or demanding anything.

The gift of salvation is free.  Once you come into the family of God, you are IN! You are loved.  Perfection is not demanded. 

As the Body of Christ, we must mature in our love for each other. The Kingdom of God is not a kingdom of slavery... it is a Kingdom of Sons!  We are free to walk out our own salvation with fear and trembling...  

Since we have been loved with an unconditional love from our Creator... how can we truly be His children and not walk in His ways.

We love... because He first loved us.  1 John 4:19

Steps to Wholeness:

If you need to lay a person or group down because you are demanding justice in your heart, don't be afraid of approaching the throne!  God wants to help you to love with no strings attached.  He wants to give you unconditional love for others.

Ask the Holy Spirit if there is anyone you need to put in the Hands of Grace?

One by one hand forgive them and hand them over to Jesus.

Then get on with whatever God has called you to do.  Life is too short to worry about someone who "owes" you.

We'll all be completely free one day in eternity... if you have to let go of a relationship until then, so be it.  You've got a race to run and talents to gain for the Lord!

Ask not what your Church can do for you...

I was about to write out a prophetic word on Facebook that has been ringing in my head recently, but I felt the Holy Spirit say "Not yet... I have something different for you to post."

About five minutes later, I got a text from a friend reminding me to do a video on "Consumer Church."  We had spoken about how it's easy to get caught up in consuming spiritual food and never really use the spiritual calories by serving others.

Here is a four-minute video explaining what Consumer Church is and how to NOT to waste your spiritual caloric intake!

God Wants You to Upgrade from Bicycle to Motorcycle

I remember my first lessons in learning how stop doing things in my flesh and learning to do them by the spirit.

I was wearing myself out by constantly trying so hard.  I would try to keep my eyes on every detail of my life. I feared that my life would crumble if I didn’t know exactly the condition of every moving part.

It was a form of control.  If I knew that all of my plates were spinning well, I had peace.  But I had to constantly keep my mind focused on all of the details of my life.

In a sense, I considered myself the master of my life.  If something failed, or I didn’t complete something with excellence, it was because in my mind I didn’t try hard enough.

When we do things by our fleshly works, we are essentially believing this lie:  I am in control of my life and I must work hard to make sure it moves forward and doesn’t collapse.

Being in control of our own lives is kind of like pedaling a bicycle uphill all day.

It’s exhausting.

When we come into the Kingdom of God, one of the lessons on the mountain of maturity is how much God really is sovereign and cares about every detail of our lives.

He is pleased to be our Savior.  But even more, would like to be our Lord!

He paid the price on the cross to save us from our sins and to save us from eternal hell.  But he also paid the price to become Lord of our lives.  He gave us the gift of the Holy Spirit.

If you want an easy way to understand how capable the Holy Spirit is in each of our lives, I’ll use this word picture.

The Holy Spirit is so big that He gives each and every person a layer of Himself.  Every single person who believes in Jesus Christ literally has their very own layer of God’s Holy Spirit.  That layer of the Holy Spirit is capable of keeping everything in our lives running smoothly without us constantly watching over it.

He simply asks that we pray and have faith.  Prayer and Faith fill the gasoline tank of our lives and then we let Him take over. 

It’s like upgrading from riding a bicycle to riding a motorcycle.

When we pray over the circumstances of our lives and then leave it in God’s hands, we are trusting that He is BIG and that He is CAPABLE and that He has our best interests at heart.

Learning to let God be the Lord of our lives is a step toward maturity and a step toward true peace.

“Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,” says the LORD Almighty. Zech 4:6

Instead of trying to control the details of our lives, we pray about them and ask the Lord to tend to the things that concern us and then we leave everything in His capable hands.

He never ceases to amaze me.  When I let Him lead and I follow, I am set free from so much anxiety and worry.  When I quit trying to be everything to everyone, I am set free from trying to be perfect.  When I step down off the throne of my own life, I enjoy it so much more because I know that God is my helper and my defender.  He is my Lord and He is my friend.

When I am doing life in my own strength and might, it feels like I am riding a bicycle.  When I am doing life ‘by the Spirit’ it is more like riding a motorcycle.  All I have to do is fill the gas tank with prayer and then believe that what I have asked for will be done for me by the Father. 

If you have never upgraded from a bicycle to a motorcycle, NOW is the time to do it!

Steps to Wholeness:

Father God, will you please forgive me for trying to control everything in my life.  I want to trust You.  I want you to not only be my Savior, I also want You to be my Lord.  I relinquish my bicycle and I pray for a motorcycle.  I want to pray and believe, and then leave my life in Your capable hands. 

Show me every place where I am still trying to do things in my flesh.  Help me to turn over everything in my life so that it is accomplished by Your Spirit.   I want You to lead and I will follow!

In the mighty name of Jesus. AMEN!

You might need to break off a generational sin of “control.”   If so, simply pray the following prayer:

Breaking Generational Sin Tool

Repent: 

“God I ask your forgiveness for the sin of ___________ .

I forgive my parents and every past generation for the sin of ___________.

I ask You, Father God, to forgive every past generation for the sin of ____________ .

Rebuke:

I apply the blood of Jesus and break it off of my generational lines both maternal and paternal all the way back down to Adam.

Replace:

I replace this sin with LIFE and a generational blessing of ____________ (opposite of curse) In Jesus Name!

Release:

I pray for the release of every generational blessing that has been held up because of these sins.  May they fall upon me and every future generation.

Breaking off generational sins is a type of spiritual warfare, so be sure to pray the 

Sealing Up Prayer found HERE.

Confession: I want to check out of reality!

By Brian Cantoni - https://www.flickr.com/photos/cantoni/10715878456, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=57069789

Confession:  It’s Friday.  It’s payday.  It’s the weekend and I don’t really want to do any work today.  I’d rather binge on Netflix.  The second season of a show I like to follow is out today and I would simply like to dive into it and check out of reality for the day.

Maybe you aren’t a Netflix binger.  Maybe you are a novel reader or a video game geek.  Maybe your definition of checking out of reality is just to sleep all day.  But you know where I’m coming from right?  You’ve had those days where you just don’t want to be an adult.

I need to do some writing.  I’ve been working on a book about being set free from bondage.  It’s in the back of my head rattling around… and I’m at war with the assignment from the Lord that needs to be finished and my desire to numb myself with Netflix.

Several years ago Netflix would have won this war.

The scales would have been tipped in favor of “Tisha’s flesh” and I would have justified my decision with all kinds of excuses.  I need to rest.  I’ve worked hard enough this week.  I deserve some “me” time.

You know the self-justification I’m speaking of – don’t you?

A few years ago I read a story from a pastor who had a prophecy that was supposed to come to pass, but it was five months late.  The pastor figured the prophet who gave him the prophecy had missed it, so he let it go.  But the Holy Spirit spoke to the pastor and said “The reward I spoke about in the prophecy is still true – but it is delayed.  I gave you the assignment to write a book and you have put it off for five months.  I cannot bring you this reward until you obey Me.”

Reading this story really infused me with a fear of the Lord. 

Our delayed obedience yields delayed rewards. 

It got me to thinking – what has been delayed in my life because I have delayed my obedience to the Lord?

Netflix binging isn’t wrong as long as I have sought His Kingdom first.  Have I fulfilled what He has called me to do first?  Have I spent time with Him?  Have I fulfilled my responsibilities to my household first?  Have I neglected my children’s or my spouse’s needs?

Netflix doesn’t win anymore with me.  I have too much to gain with my obedience.

God’s Kingdom is first… and then Tisha’s kingdom comes next. 

Sometimes when I seek God about what is on His list for me to do – He’ll say “Push the pause button and binge on Netflix if you want.”  But it’s OK because I’ve surrendered my day to Him.  My calendar belongs to Him.  He holds today and knows what tomorrow brings.  My job is to fear the Lord and to serve Him with my life.

Today – Netflix is not first on God’s list for me.  It’s time to go and write.  It’s much easier to submit my flesh to His will these days.  I want to be on time with my obedience – because I love Jesus. 

My obedience is a reflection of my love for Him.  AND if I obey Him there is a reward for my obedience… He reveals Himself to me!

Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them. 

John 14:21

If Netflix (or whatever else it is that you use to check out of reality) is still winning the war of your flesh, it’s time to put God and His Kingdom first.  It doesn’t mean you have to give up Netflix binging… it just means you get God’s stuff done first.

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

 Matthew 6:33

Test God’s word by handing over your day to Him.  Hand over your calendar to Him and let Him order your steps.  You will find that when He has control of the wheel that there is time for everything… even a Netflix binge.

Don't Miss the Beauty of the Wilderness

God is a God of cycles.

He uses them all the time in nature.  The cycle of seasons from Fall to Winter to Spring to Summer is a cycle.    Fall is a dying away of the past season.  Winter is a time of hibernation.  Spring is a new birth.  Summer is a time of bearing fruit.  Then the cycle starts all over again.

There is a cycle of planting, tending, and reaping.  There is a hydrologic cycle evaporation, condensation, and precipitation.

God used a cycle of feasts with His people on a yearly basis.

God likes cycles.  It's part of His nature.

In the Bible, He often used cycles with the men and women that He trained up.  Abraham went through a cycle to become the Father of many nations.  Joseph went through a cycle to become the savior of his people.  Moses went through a cycle to become the deliverer.  The Israelites went through a cycle as God delivered them out of Egypt.  David went through a cycle before he became King.  Even Jesus went through the cycle of God to fulfill His destiny.

God's cycle in our lives looks like this:  death to the old pattern, a time of "death to self" in the wilderness, resurrection, fruitfulness.

Specifically, in Jesus's life, we see this play out.   When He was baptized by John the Baptist, He was dying to the old pattern of His life.  Directly after the baptism, Jesus was sent into the desert (or wilderness) for testing (Mark 1:10-13).  He came out of the 40 days of fasting in the desert filled with power from the Holy Spirit. (Luke 4:14)  Then he spent the next three and a half years with a great deal of fruitfulness until His crucifixion.

When Jesus was crucified He went through the same cycle - death to the old pattern (crucifixion), three days in the grave (or wilderness), resurrection from the grave, and then 40 days of fruitfulness ending in the outpouring of Pentecost.

Personally, I remember a very defined "Fall season" in my life.  I could feel myself headed for the wilderness.  I was resisting it with everything that was in me.  I felt my joy leaving me. I felt great sadness during the death and wilderness part of my journey.  I resented it actually.

I did not cooperate with my "wilderness" very well in the beginning.  But once the Lord got my attention in the desert and I stopped feeling sorry for myself, I began to see so much beauty.  There is great beauty in the winter season.  Everything is much slower.  It may seem like you are going nowhere... but there is a reason for winter.  It is during the wilderness that we are purified.  It is during the winter that our roots grow deep.

During the wilderness we learn that the only thing worth having is Jesus.

Life comes into focus in the winter/wilderness season. 

Every part of the cycle is necessary and important.  The winter/wilderness is probably the most significant part of the cycle.  But it is only as fruitful within our souls as we allow it to be.

Don't resist the winter.  Don't fight with God about the wilderness.  It is part of His nature.

Consider it pure joy - if you are traveling through the wilderness - because God is giving you an opportunity to mature.  

Don't waste the opportunity with self-pity. Understand that there is not a person alive who has escaped a wilderness period - even Jesus!

There is great beauty in the wilderness - ask the Lord to give you spiritual eyes to see it!

Doing this ONE thing would shift Believers into high gear

We always seem to be looking for the magic pill or formula.  We want extra pounds to melt away with a simple pill.  We want to find the formula to making fast cash.  We are definitely a microwave/fastfood generation.

As most of us know, the Kingdom of God is not built on a microwave timeline.  The Kingdom is more like a crockpot.  God slow simmers us in order to bring out the best aromas and flavors.  Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Gentleness, Faithfulness and Self Control are all spiritual foods that are born out of a slow constant heat.

As God simmers us in the crockpot of life, we are able to deepen our flavor profile to taste like award winning BBQ!

However, even though most of our lives as Believers is slow simmered, I have some good news that could shift some of the things we’ve been waiting on into high gear.

There is one thing that I have learned that can lead to an acceleration in the things of God.  Whenever I have fallen into a lukewarm pattern, or whenever it seems like I keep hitting my head against a wall or a ceiling.  Whenever I can’t seem to overcome old habits that keep me going in circles, I have to go back and ask myself this question…

Do I really believe that I am a child of the Most High?

Or… am I acting like an orphan?

Whenever I seem to be stuck in low gear about life and I keep wandering in circles, I must go back and ask myself – am I operating out of self pity or a low opinion of myself. 

Have I forgotten who my Daddy is?

Because if I am an orphan and not a child of God – my view of myself and what I am capable of is going to be much different than if I know that I am royalty.

When we understand that we have access to the King, the one who invites us to call Him daddy, we have access to every answer we need.  We must have FAITH that we are children of the promise.  We are co-heirs with Christ.

If we are having financial trouble, are we trying to work it out ourselves and “pull it together” before we take it to our Daddy?

If we are having trouble with besetting sins, are we understanding the love and compassion that our Daddy has for us, or do we let shame come between our relationship with our King?

If we are having health issues, do we understand that our Daddy is also the Great Physician?  That our answers are at His throne?

An orphan doesn’t have access to their parent.  An orphan can’t ask their Daddy to take care of their needs.  An orphan can only rely on themselves.

If we are Believers, we have been grafted into the heart of Father God.  We have become His sons!

Galatians 4

:3-7 So also we, while we were children, were held in bondage under the elemental things of the world. 4 But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, 5 so that He might redeem those who were under the Law,

that we might receive the adoption as sons.

6 Because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” 7 Therefore

you are no longer a slave, but a son; and if a son, then an heir through God.

If we are heirs to God’s kingdom, we need to act like it.  If we truly believe ALL of God’s word, we must accept the fact that we have authority to approach our Daddy for help when we need it.

As an heir, we have access to the Father, access to His power, access to His wisdom, access to his understanding, His mercy and His wealth.  God wants us to believe that we are His children.  He wants us to come boldly before His throne of grace in our time of need.   We are His sons and daughters.  If we truly BELIEVE this and begin to operate our lives standing on this foundation – knowing that our Daddy is more powerful than anything on earth -  nothing shall be impossible for us and it will accelerate the Body of Christ into high gear!

BELIEVE that you have received Sonship!

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Mark 11:24

Knowing God as Mr. Miyagi

It is incredibly important to know the character of the God we serve.  We can get frustrated really quickly with our Heavenly Father if we do not understand his M.O.  His Mode of Operation is pertinent in understanding our place as His children.

When we don’t understand what the Father is doing or how His character is being played out in our lives, we can make stupid decisions or worse we can become disobedient because we misunderstand Him.

Unfortunately, I speak from a wealth of experiences of poorly made decisions and even disobedience because I have not understood the time or season God was using to build me up to accomplish my purpose.

Sometimes in our seasons of discipline, God is a lot like Mr. Miyagi from the movie “The Karate Kid.”

In the movie, Daniel, a teenager, wants to learn Karate.  He asks Mr. Miyagi to train him, but Mr. Miyagi begins to ask Daniel to do strange things like waxing his car, sanding the floor, painting the fence and painting the house.  This makes Daniel furious because he feels like a free laborer for Mr. Miyagi.  He almost quits and walks away.

If you want a little nostalgic video – CLICK HERE!!

What Daniel doesn’t understand is that Mr. Miyagi wasn’t really using Daniel for his own purposes.  He was using the opportunity to train Daniel in defensive Karate moves.  Daniel became very strong in these moves because he did them over and over and over again.

I have had times in my life when I felt “abused” by God because He was asking me to do something over and over again that seemingly was getting me nowhere.

I worked at a food pantry handing out groceries to the poor for four years.  And while it was satisfying to help the needy, it became monotonous.  Anybody who has spent some time in a nonprofit organization like this can understand that constantly handing out food to a group of people who are somewhat ungrateful can grate on your nerves.  (Not everyone was ungrateful – but those who are can easily make you lose your compassion if you don’t constantly check your heart!  Jesus was kind to the wicked and ungrateful. Luke 6:35)

I didn’t know at the time that I needed to understand this group of people because God wanted me to help them out of poverty.  I didn’t understand that handing out groceries three times a week would help me to empathize with people in poverty and realize the mindset that keeps them in chains to it.  I can now minister to the poor because of the monotonous motion of handing out groceries! 

(Read more by clicking HERE.)

God was being like Mr. Miyagi to me.  He was giving me a skill that I did not know I needed.  I had some self-pity about it while “waxing the car,” but I am really glad that God made me do it and that I did not quit too soon!

God was like Mr. Miyagi to several people in the Word as well.

God made David stay in the palace with King Saul.  Saul wanted to kill David and even threw spears at him.  God was training David in the midst of a very hard season.  David learned not to throw spears back.  And he learned how NOT to be a king.

God did the same thing with Joseph.  Even though Joseph was sold into slavery and then unjustly into prison, God was Mr. Miyagi to him because He taught Joseph how to be an administrator in the seemingly mundane circumstances.  None of Joseph’s trials were wasted – He rose up to save an entire nation from famine…all because God made him “wax the car.”

Maybe God has you in a place right now that seems like you aren’t going anywhere.  Maybe the people around you hate you or you have been placed in a really difficult circumstance where you have to constantly keep your love on.

Perhaps God is using His Mr. Miyagi trick on you?  Perhaps He is training you in all the right places. You may be gaining muscles in the very area needed in order to fulfill your purpose. 

Trust the Lord in the narrow place.  Obey Him if He asks you to wax the car, sand the floor, or paint the house. 

Nothing is wasted in the Kingdom of God.  Ask the Lord to open your eyes to what He might be doing and whatever you do …. DON’T QUIT!!!

Galatians 6:9 And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.

Why Women of God Need to Transition from Princess to Queen

I remember a few years ago when the Holy Spirit was calling me higher into maturity.  One of the things that I had to overcome was my mindset of being a Princess.

During this season the Lord gave me a picture of a chess board.  He kept pointing to the Queen and said, “I need for you to be this!  The Queen is the most versatile piece on the chess board.  You are not living up to your authority.  You have more power in the game than you realize.”

I desired to be Deborah.  I desired to be Esther.  I desired to be a bold Prophet.  But I had no idea how far away from truly being a Queen that I was. 

In my mind, in my heart – I was a Princess.

…but I was not a Queen.

To climb higher I had to allow the Lord to shift me from feeling helpless to being powerful.  I had to shift from the one being saved to the one doing the saving.

Before God called me higher, I thought of myself a bold and strong and certainly not helpless.  But I came to the conclusion that I felt way more “helpless” than I realized.

The Lord began to deal with the lies in my mind.  They sounded something like this:

Lie #1:  As a woman, I am weak and it is a man’s job to save me.

Truth:  The whole word of God is applicable to women too.  God warns us that we will stand before synagogue rulers and authorities, He will give us what to say. (Luke 12:11)  We are called to confront sin, even sin that is committed by men.  We are called to be Apostles, Prophets, Pastors, Teachers and Evangelists – this means we LEAD!  We are also called to business like Lydia (Acts 16:14) or the Proverbs 31 woman.  We cannot always expect the men to do the leading.  Women are also called to lead.

Lie #2  I need permission from people to be strong and powerful.

Truth:  As a Queen in God’s kingdom, I do not need another human’s permission to be strong, powerful, or to lead.  My King is Christ.  I obey only Him.  Of course, we never undermine God’s established authority unless we are given the directive by God to so.  God ALWAYS trumps earthly authority, we must simply know with certainty that He is calling us to exert His authority. 

When our power or authority is not received from others, we do not throw a fit, we do not control the situation, we do not demand anything – we simply speak the truth and if it is not received we wipe the dust from our feet and rest in the truth of where our authority comes from.  A Princess feels rejected but a Queen does not get offended.

Lie #3  I must be concerned with my reputation.

A Princess is focused on “me.”  A Queen is focused on those she leads and their welfare, even if her reputation takes a hit when making noble decisions.  A Queen is not a people pleaser and is OK with saying “no” to people.

Lie #4   I need the praise and recognition for my accomplishments.

A Princess compares herself with others, having a need to be better than other women.  Therefore, she lives on the praise of others.  But a Queen knows who she is, a child of the Most High.  She is not spoiled in any way and receives praise with elegance and humility.  A Queen never needs recognition.  Any recognition she does receive is immediately put in her King’s account.

The women in the Body of Christ must make the shift from Princess to Queen.  The Body of Christ has great need of you daughter of the Most High!  We need for you to carry a scepter of authority in the spiritual realm and the natural realm.

 Ask the Lord if you are believing any lies?

Ask Him to make you bold and to help you rise up to your full potential as a Queen!

Steps to Wholeness:

My prayer for the women of God…

Father God I ask You to shift your daughters from being Princesses to being Queens.  I pray that every lie that is keeping them from rising up in their authority would be uprooted from their minds.  Renew their minds to be strong and bold and courageous.  I pray that Deborah’s would rise up and bring righteous judgment to the earth.  I pray for Esther’s to rise up and save her people from evil.  I pray for Lydia’s to rise up in the business world and to impact the world through wisdom and understanding.  I pray for the true understanding of the boldness and fearlessness of the Proverbs 31 woman.  May all of your daughters fully embrace the call to rule and reign!

The Glorious Gift of Rejection

Consider it PURE JOY my brothers whenever you face trials.

I used to roll my eyes at this verse from James 1.  I didn’t want to hear it in the middle of my painful trial.  I hated reading those words in the midst of a season of rejection.

Being rejected by the people you love is the WORST!  Being rejected by people who you assumed were your friends can be paralyzing… especially when your heart was pure and you meant no harm.

You start to ask yourself, “What is wrong with me that so many people reject me?  What is the game I must play in order to not be rejected by those close to me?

Rejection can come in many forms.  It can be a literal disapproval and subsequent distancing of those who have decided that you are not good enough.  Rejection can be felt when people move on to new seasons and leave you behind.  It can also come because we have decided to step closer to God and the people closest to us do not want to take the step with you. 

There is rejection in divorce.  There is the feeling of rejection when the kids leave home.  And though it might seem strange, we can feel rejected through the death of loved ones.

It is important to discern and divide what “feels” like rejection and what truly is rejection. 

Sometimes God is the one who separates people.  Other times people make a conscious decision to walk away.

Once you separate the two, it will be easier to understand why I am declaring that rejection can be one of the most glorious gifts and trials that we face on earth.

If people constantly reject you – take heart.  They did the same thing to Jesus… and He was perfect.

None of us walk perfect lives, but Jesus did.  And He was rejected by His disciples, His followers, His religion, and His nation (people group).  Yet, He accomplished all that God had for Him. 

Rejection doesn’t keep you from your destiny.

How you handle rejection does.

Look at David.  He was rejected by his brothers, his father, his king, his mighty men at Ziklag, his wife as he worshiped and later his son, Absalom.  But David forgave and he kept his eyes on his maker.  He didn’t let the rejection of men deter him.  He knew that rejection was a gift that kept him focused on what was truly important… pleasing his Heavenly Father.  He became a friend of God and a king whose kingdom will never end.

Look at Joseph.  He was rejected by his brothers and sold into slavery.  He used his gifting to help Potiphar build his house but was later rejected by Potiphar and his wife.  He helped the cupbearer in a time of need but he forgot about Joseph for another two years.  But in all of that time Joseph came to understand that no matter who rejected him, God never left Joseph.  God never rejected him.  God saw to it that Joseph completed his destiny.  He saved his own brothers and generational lineage by walking through rejection with forgiveness in his heart.

Look at the Woman at the Well.  She was rejected by her entire town because she was “unacceptable socially.”  And yet when this woman met the Messiah – all of the anger in her heart melted and as soon as she understood who she was talking to, she ran to her enemies to bring them the good news.  It was BECAUSE of her rejection that she led her entire town to the Lord.

In the Kingdom of God, rejection… if handled correctly… is a gift.

“You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.”  Matthew 10:22

 “Blessed are you when people hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man.  Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven.  For that is how their fathers treated the prophets.”  Luke 6:22-23

We really do need to rejoice when we face trials.  Because when our faith is tested and we persevere through it – we are being shaped into the image of Christ.  The perfect One who was rejected by His very own creation, persevered to bring the very ones who rejected Him eternal life.

Forgive those who have rejected you.  Recognize that neither the praise nor the rejection of men has anything to do with fulfilling your destiny on earth.  Live for the praise of your Heavenly Father.

Forgive.  Learn.  Love.  Persevere.  Mature.  <--------------  This is why rejection is a gift – It actually prepares us for our destiny!

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 

because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 

Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.  James 1:2-4

The Secret for Drawing Nearer to God’s Heart

The more you grow in the Lord, the more magnetic He seems.  The more you spend time with Him, the more you need Him.  The more you understand Him, the more you see your own nakedness and blindness.  The love of our Creator is constantly drawing us nearer to His heart. 

There is pain involved the closer we get to Him.  Because nothing that is unholy can remain in us the closer we get to His glory.  We fix our eyes on our Father, and we lose whatever is necessary to climb ever closer to His heart.

There is a secret for drawing nearer to the heart of God.  It’s hidden in plain sight in His Word.  Inside the layout of the tabernacle and the temple, we see God mapping out a way for us to come closer to Him by showing us the process for approaching the Holy of Holies.

It all begins in the Outer Court.  The Outer Court is a representation of THE WAY to God’s heart.  Once we enter in, we lay things aside.  We ask forgiveness for our sins (the altar) then we wash ourselves clean in the blood of Christ (the laver). 

We then walk into the Holy Place we honor THE TRUTH with our worship.  We let the truth of God’s light shine on us and reveal anything in us that does not line up with His Kingdom (the Lampstand).  We let all of the worldly things be replaced by the bread of life (the Show Bread).  We learn to communicate with God through prayer (Bowl of Incense).

All of these things will bring us closer to the heart of God.  But there is still more.  We’ve experienced THE WAY and THE TRUTH.  But we have yet to experience THE LIFE.

The secret place where God dwells, the place where His presence and glory abide, the place where we fully come to know Him and the life that He gives is in the Holy of Holies.  The Holy of Holies is where the Ark of the Covenant was stored.  This is where the presence of God dwelt during the time of Moses and David.

The death of Jesus opened the curtain that separated regular people from the presence of God.  It literally split in two and opened up the Holy of Holies to us.  But to enter into the Holy of Holies, we also must die.

Of course, I’m not talking literally.  I am speaking of our flesh. We must die completely to our flesh to enter the Holy of Holies where the heart of God resides.

Most of my readers have already experienced the process of the forgiveness and cleansing of sins in the outer courts.  Most of you have already experienced the process of letting your heart, mind, and soul be exposed to the light of God for Him to transform into His image.  You are learning to let Him be your living bread, and you are learning to communicate with him in a deeper way.

But there is still more.

Some of you are feeling this call to go into the Holy of Holies, but you cannot figure out what is in your way.

This is the revelation I want to bring to you today.  Sometimes we can’t seem to enter into the Holy of Holies because there is “perversion” blocking the entrance.

When we have gone through the process of the Outer Court and then the Holy Place, we so desperately want to enter the Holy of Holies, but we are not yet ready because we still have some counterfeit beliefs about the character of God.

I have found that when I am mis-believing God about who He is, I am unable to get close to His heart.  I cannot enter into the fullness of His presence if I believe a lie about who He is.

If I believe that He is all Lamb and not a Lion, I am believing a perversion about His character.

If I believe that He is a hard taskmaster like a Pharoah, I am believing a perversion of who He really is.

If I believe that God requires me to work in order to be accepted as a Son, I am misunderstanding His heart.

If I believe that He looks the other way at my sin and there is no consequence, I am not fearing the holiness of His character and my understanding of Him is perverted.

To truly enter into the Holy of Holies we must allow every perversion of His character in our hearts and minds to be purged. 

To enter into the glory of His presence, we must ask the question: "Where is my heart not seeing you accurately Lord?"

Then we must allow our thoughts and our ways to die and allow the true character of the Lord to be planted in our hearts and minds.  We must allow God to renew our minds when it comes to His character.  Because His thoughts are not our thoughts and His mind is not our mind.

When we remove the perversion from our thinking and lay down everything, we may have been taught by others about the character of God we can see Him clearly and are allowed entrance into the Holy of Holies.

If you want to enter into the heart of God we must pray this prayer diligently: 

Father God, show me Who You are!

Three Ways You Can Use Social Media to Spread the Gospel

I know some Christians struggle with Social Media – it can tend to be a public stage for selfish adulation or a place to air your complaints in public.  But when we get offended by people who use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. in an egocentric manner – we allow them to steal a very good platform for sharing the gospel.

Upon first learning about how Social Media worked, my friend’s teenage son remarked that this would be the way in which the Good News of Jesus (the Gospel) would be spread across the world.

Don’t get offended at the fleshliness of people who use Facebook to post their drama.  That is exactly what the enemy of your soul wants you to do.  He wants you to get offended and abandon the platform that could potentially reach thousands, even millions of people.

As of November 2016, there are 1.79 billion people using Facebook on a monthly basis.

What if the Body of Christ took it upon themselves to think more consciously about our testimonies and about the goodness of God?  What if we used Social Media to preach the gospel to all creation?

He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.

Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.  Mark 16:15-16

Here are three ways we can use Social Media to fulfill the command of Christ in Mark 16:15-16

1. Preach what Jesus did.

When Jesus came out from His desert experience, He was full of power and preached this:

From that time on Jesus began to preach,

“Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.”

  Matthew 4:17

This is an appropriate message because no matter where someone is at in their lives – the Kingdom of God is their answer.

Preaching the gospel is more than telling people about what Jesus accomplished on the cross. Preaching the Kingdom is giving people the answer that they need to their life’s problems. Coming near to the Kingdom of God is the answer for ALL the people of the world.  This is why we call the gospel the GOOD NEWS.

If people are hurting, they need to take their hurt to Father God who can bring healing.

If people are angry, God can show them the root of their anger and learn to forgive like Jesus did.

If people are in pride, they need to humble themselves before Almighty God who will one day judge them.

If people are happy and full of joy, they need to give glory to God.

If people are walking in fear, they need to know that becoming a child of God can squash all fears.

This is how we preach the Kingdom.  We preach the Good News that God has the answers!

Post scriptures that have come alive to you recently and tell why.

Post pictures that draw you close to God and explain why.

Post songs from Youtube that have been running in your head lately.

Post a revelation God spoke to you about the latest sermon you heard.

Invite people to church.

Post about the friends and family who God has used in your life.

Encourage someone not to quit!

Whether people listen to you – or accept your message of the gospel – is not up to you.  Simply ask the Lord for the right words and the right time to post His words.  Be VERY plugged into the Holy Spirit and follow His leading as you post the Good News!

“Whoever listens to you listens to me; whoever rejects you rejects me; but whoever rejects me rejects him who sent me.”

Luke 10:17

2. Post your testimony…or snippets of it.

The most powerful gift you can give the world is the testimony of how good God has been to you in your life.  Stories help us to convey the message of God’s Kingdom.  Jesus even said we would overcome by the blood of the lamb and the word of our testimony.  Tell how good God has been to you on Social Media.

Make sure you aren’t whiney.  Make sure you aren’t drawing attention to yourself.  But give God the glory for how good He has been to you.  Be truthful.  Be humble.  Don’t be full of doubt. Believe that God will give you the right words.  Let Him tell His story through you.  I promise that your story will touch someone!

3. Repost good Kingdom content.

When you repost good Kingdom content (when you like, share, re-tweet, regram and so on) – it is like you turn the volume up on a post.  Every time you repost an article by Franklin Graham or a “Speak Life” picture from TobyMac you are making the volume of that post increase.

If God uses a person to speak His truth on Social Media and it resonates in Your spirit as a word from God – then pray about reposting it.  Only do it if the Lord leads you to, but if it is something that will preach “Repent for the Kingdom of God is near” the world needs to hear it!

WORDS are powerful.

Social Media WORDS are powerful.

Post the Good News on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and all the rest.  Speak LIFE on Social Media and watch other people be drawn to the light that you shine so brightly!