Not easily threatened

How much are we limited and held back because of fear? When we feel threatened we tend to react in some way. The “fight or flight” instinct activates and what follows is not usually pretty or helpful. I have found that giving in to threatened feelings shuts down my spiritual perception.

I jumped in on a twenty-one day fast hosted by my church. We are giving God the first part of 2019 as a reminder that we will see his goodness break in on us throughout the whole year. The idea is to give up something good that you enjoy in order to receive the best thing, a deeper relationship with God.

The breakthrough I have been asking God for in my life, home, and church is in the realm of the miraculous. I want to partner with the Holy Spirit in the name of Jesus in doing miracles, signs, and wonders. I also want those around me to do the same.

During my fast, the Lord has been making me more aware of the freedom I possess because I am in Christ. There is a reason that Jesus shared his freedom with me. Because I am free, I can live unafraid. I don’t need to act or react to anything locked up in fear. (Galatians 5:1)

Jesus lived in total freedom because he was fully aware that he was free 100% of the time. Whatever he did, he was in charge. Wherever he went, he was intentional and fully present. He lived on earth by the power and authority of heaven.

He could see and hear in the realm of the spirit because it was no threat to him. Because he was not threatened, he was willing to perceive all things in the seen and unseen realm. Now, because I am in life-union with him, I can begin to perceive what he sees and hears in complete freedom.

You and I will grow in our ability to receive and declare the living word of the Lord as we trust his presence in us. We are going to see more of his power displayed in 2019! Take courage in these words of Jesus, “And everything I’ve taught you is so that the peace which is in me will be in you and will give you great confidence as you rest in me. For in this unbelieving world you will experience trouble and sorrows, but you must be courageous, for I have conquered the world!

You are a blessing!

Trying Harder is Toxic to the Prophetic

The Holy Spirit is training me to live in full acceptance as a son in the family of God. I did not receive the “spirit of religious duty,” leading me back into the fear of never being good enough. (Romans 8:10-17 TPT)

God longs for us to give ourselves to an intimate relationship with him. In Christ he transforms us into his friends and lovers. In order to move forward in receiving and declaring the living word of the Lord, we need to anticipate more amazement over who Jesus is in us.

Religious duty is not amazing! Nurturing an attitude of religious duty, of trying harder in my life is toxic to my growth in the prophetic. It is time for the Church (remember that the church is people) to come clean about our friendship with religious duty.

To be prophetic requires an ever-increasing fire of friendship with Jesus. Friendship with religion (trying hard to please God) is NOT friendship with Jesus. The first gift God gives us on our journey in the prophetic is friendship with him from the inside-out.

How would your life be different if you surrendered to his promise to never leave you or forsake you? What if never leaving you includes those times when you have sinned and/or deeply disappointed yourself as part of his family? Are you ready for a deeper surrender to his never-failing friendship with you? Talk to him about it.

You are a blessing!

Taken into 2019

The living word of the Lord changes everything. Everything about God speaks. His word is like a fire. It is also like a hammer. (Jeremiah 23:29) He speaks and a new creation comes into being… YOU come into being.

The most elemental truth concerning you is identifying as God’s creation… craftsmanship… artistry… design. Through life-union with Jesus, the dead imposter you used to be is buried and your true self is breaking out as you are pulled into the future by grace. With every new day in Christ, you are becoming more of who really are. God has promised never to abandon you.

Surrender to the Holy Spirit’s current that longs to take you through that open door in front of you into the New Year. His desire is to change things through you this year. His creative power belongs to you in Christ. You have the authority in the name of Jesus to declare new things with your life and your voice. Because you are in life-union with Jesus and He is in you, your life speaks. (John 15:1-8 TPT)

In 2019, may you embrace your calling to declare the amazing news of God’s new creation. No one can share it like you. You have been designed with a unique voice to declare his glory. You matter because of Christ in you. His choice to be in life-union with you and me constantly lifts us to reign with him in this world to see His glory on earth as it is in heaven. Here’s to the best year ever in 2019!

You are a blessing!

Consuming Love for Jesus and His Legacy…

God’s dream poured into all creation through the prayers of Jesus is a unified love and the legacy of his family on earth as it is in heaven. (John 17, Matthew 6:9-13)

I will be forever grateful for having been born into a home and a church family who led me into God’s love. The legacy of God’s family is self-sacrificing love for him, each other and his creation.
Several decades ago I fell down on my face and prayed a prayer of brokenness that shifted the trajectory of my life… “Jesus, whether this makes you glad or not, you are stuck with me.”

The life-story we have written together is all about his relentless love consuming me. He keeps pouring it out even though so many times I am disappointed with myself. And, it’s not just for me. Somehow, he causes that same love to flow out of me to our wild world. When he planted me as his child, his intention and dream for me was a full grown, productive tree that has sent out deep roots and is not afraid of the heat and the storms. (Jeremiah 17:7-8)

The living word of the Lord for you and everyone in your life is that you are designed to be in Christ. By faith receive the fact that the Father loves you the way he loves the Son because you are in Christ. Your life has meaning and purpose because you became a part of God’s legacy on earth as in heaven by that same faith. You don’t live for yourself anymore. The consuming fire that started in your heart when you surrendered to Jesus is increasing with love for all nations and generations to embrace the same oneness you have with him.

God’s family, his household exists as a fulfillment of his dream and the answer to the prayers of Jesus to the Father. Take a few minutes today to ask the Lord to increase your capacity to receive and give more of his consuming love for all nations and generations.

You are a blessing!

Grace is better than details

Grace is a more valuable treasure from God to me than details. In my time of need, what matters most is remembering where to go. All of the resources of heaven are available to us on earth because of what Jesus has accomplished. Those resources are accessed at the throne of grace.

Last night I was with some prayer warriors from my church family. It was our weekly prophetic prayer night. Over the past few years, we have nurtured a prophetic prayer culture of surrender. When we get together, we lay down our individual agendas to move with what God wants and where He wants to lead us in prayer.

Receiving and declaring the living word of the Lord over the life of our church family is the lifeblood of our intercession. Last night it seemed that I was struggling to connect with what the Lord was speaking over us. Then one of our men prophesied, “Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16)

The word of the Lord began to stir me up and my soul came alive with hope again. I don’t need details from God’s throne. I need grace. Grace from God is an unlimited resource for us in Christ.

The prophetic is all about living with confidence. But, it’s not about always having the right details. Through our faith in Jesus, we have access to the throne room of heaven. He has brought us back to life from the inside out. We are perfectly designed to be the temple of the Holy Spirit. He dwells with us and in us.

That means his throne of grace is an inward journey. The hope of glory is within you. It is the living presence of Jesus in you that gives you confidence in your time of need. Colossians 1:27 refers to “the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

Don’t believe the lie that you need to make an impossibly long journey somewhere outside of yourself in your time of need. The throne of grace in Christ is accessed from within you. In fact, you are hidden with Christ in God. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you see it and understand what that means for you.

You are a blessing!

Not Alone

There are days when it is only the momentum of my habit that carries me here. It brings me to this time of solitude where I am alone with God. Every morning he is faithful and never fails to reassure me with the living word.

I reconnect with meaning here in this space. It is an unseen garden where I walk with God. You could say it is the Father’s vineyard. He joyfully sends me to work here. (see Matthew 21:28-32) I long to hear his reassurance in my soul. I need to taste the living water as he reminds me that he loves my perseverance. He is blessed when I keep showing up to work the vineyard day after day for the glory of Jesus’ name.

As I think about you today, I am thanking God. The fact that you would take a few minutes to read these paragraphs is in itself life-giving. According to God’s living word, I don’t look at you from a limited, worldly point of view. I know that in Christ you are part of the New Creation work of God. (2 Corinthians 5:17) We thank God for each other because we are members of one body. Through the living presence of the Holy Spirit, we are formed into a temple where God dwells.

So, this morning was one of those times when it was only the force of habit that pulled me to be awake and alone with God. Thank you, Father, for good habits. We love your vineyard. Open our eyes to see that you have favored us by sending us to do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus giving thanks to the Father through him. (Colossians 3:17).

Thank you, friend, for encouraging my soul as you read what I have written. Let’s remember each other today and pray that by a miracle of God’s grace we will perceive heaven as it flows all around us in those places our habits carry us. He has promised to never leave you or forsake you. We are not alone.

You are a blessing!

Finding Our Sanity

Our new self in Christ speaks so powerfully that it overwhelms our life… our experience of the world. We each find our sanity as a branch grafted into the vine. Jesus is the vine and The Father is the gardener. Find yourself by staying in life-union with him and by allowing his living word to flow in you. (see John 15 TPT)

Flowing beneath the surface…

It is a profound mystery to drive your roots deeper in search of the wisdom you need to live your story. I declare to you that regardless of your feelings or your current perceptions, you are God’s workmanship (masterpiece) created in Christ Jesus to do good works that God has already planned in advance for you. (Ephesians 2:10)

The relentless river of God’s creativity and design is flowing and creating pressure underground and beneath the surface of your life. If you will turn aside at any time (the sooner the better) and prophesy over yourself the announcement that Jesus made about the Spirit of God bursting out from deep within you, you will begin to see realness and authenticity flourish again. It is irreplaceable and unmistakable. Here is that announcement recorded in John 7:37-38 “On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”

You cannot afford to lose heart and it’s not necessary. I agree with you in faith that change is happening for you as you drive your roots deeper in pursuit of hope and power for your life. The Spirit of God will meet you there for the glory of King Jesus.

You are a blessing!

Buried deep…

I never could have predicted how The Gardener would plant me after I gave him my “yes” many decades ago. I never would have sent my roots deeper when the troubles came if he wasn’t so trustworthy. I never would have known that the glory of heaven was buried deep in the soil if it wasn’t for his living word. (see Jeremiah 17:7-8)

You are a planting of the Lord destined to be an oak of righteousness. This moment matters. (Isaiah 60:21, 61:3)

You are a blessing!

Hungry for the word of the Lord and the signs of heaven?

Samuel was a prophet to Israel in the Old Testament. He had an amazing track record with the people of God. It was written of him, “The Lord was with Samuel as he grew up, and he let none of Samuel’s words fall to the ground. And all Israel from Dan to Beersheba recognized that Samuel was attested as a prophet of the Lord.” (1 Samuel 3:19-20)

I love the story of how Samuel was introduced to the prophetic while he was a boy. You can read it in 1 Samuel 3. There is so much to learn from the interaction between Eli, Samuel, and the Lord. It speaks loudly to us about the need for spiritual mothers and fathers to step up and own what has been entrusted to us.

However, I want to focus on the first verse in the chapter. “In those days the word of the Lord was rare; there were not many visions.” (1 Samuel 3:1) Take a moment and think about that. What would it be like to live in a time when you almost never perceived the word of the Lord and almost no one saw visions? Maybe we know about that far too well.

I don’t believe that the living word of the Lord was scarce or unavailable. It is usually the case that engaging with it is rare and unusual. God is not honored or pleased to make his amazing Presence known anywhere his living word is not welcomed and embraced. Oh, He is there, but the manifestation of the Holy Spirit won’t be experienced.

The voice of the Lord is speaking today. We will hear it if we long for it. If the church will set our hearts on being with him by faith in King Jesus, and surrender to whatever he needs to do in us, we will hear his voice. (see Isaiah 6:1-8)

There is an unprecedented move of God rising up in the world. It is marked by a hunger and thirst for the living words of the Lord. Will we be a generation who won’t stop until it is said, “the word of the Lord was overflowing and the signs of heaven were everywhere”? THAT would be amazing. By the grace of God, that is what we are going after.

You are a blessing!