Let’s Be Jesus To Those In Fear!

By Kathi Pelton

There is so much fear right now and for the first time in my lifetime— it’s global! But rather than focusing on whether the fear and reactions to those fears are warranted or not, let’s respond to the reality that much of the world has become very afraid. There are those who feel alone and there are those who have real health issues or children (loved ones) that are vulnerable to illnesses– they feel afraid! There are people out there who have experienced traumas that have left them more susceptible to gripping fear and those who have never been shown true love. It really doesn’t matter what our opinions are regarding the source of the fear– what matters is our response as those who are to carry the love of Jesus to the world.

Right now a lot of people who are in fear are watching social media but will they merely see the body of Christ making light or even “mocking” their fear. Again, it doesn’t matter what your opinion is but what does matter is that the fear that many are experiencing is real and is paralyzing. So let’s be light, be hope, be compassion— be Jesus to them!

“For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7

I’d like to draw your attention to the second half of this verse, “…but a spirit of power, love and of a sound mind.” I believe it’s time to arise during this time that so many have come under a spirit of fear and release the power of love and use the “sound mind” given to us to minister peace and hope in a world that is gripped with fear.

I saw a post today where someone was offering to go to the store or bring food or visit those who feel that they cannot leave their home (do to fear or who are elderly or fighting flu symptoms, etc.). What a great response!

What if part of the great harvest begins with His people loving a world that has been infected; not only by a virus but by a true spirit of fear? What if we respectfully offer to sit with them (even with a mask on if that is what helps them). What if we offer to run an errand or bring a meal or pray for them?

Or; even if all you can do is post words of love, peace, hope and encouragement on social media or through a personal email— let’s do that!

We can be Jesus in this and release a pandemic of love. Maybe if the churches have to close their doors then instead of being behind the doors of the church this Sunday we begin to visit the places that fear has been visiting? Why should fear get to have the last word when love can be offered like a cup of cool water on a scorching day?

We can joke about toilet paper shortages but let’s not mock those that are truly afraid. This is an opportunity to show love; what does love look like?

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails…” 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

It does not dishonor. We need to walk and present a love that honors. Be sure that both in person and on social media that we are not dishonoring of those who are fearful. I read a post from a lady who lives nearby to our city saying that she wore a mask and gloves to the grocery store yesterday and people were mocking her, making comments about over-reacting and shaking their heads at her. Well, what people didn’t know is that she has a seriously ill child at home who’s immune system is highly compromised and she has to be extraordinarily careful to not bring home any virus! Wouldn’t it have been wonderful if someone had walked up to her and offered to pray for her or help carry her groceries? If just one person had stopped to offer love they would have seen seen the tears behind her mask.

We have an incredible opportunity to love right now. Let’s stop completely focusing on what the enemy is doing and ask Jesus what He would do. Of course we need to pray and take spiritual authority over sickness and fear but we also need to be the love of God to those in need at this time. Let’s band together as churches, as caring human beings, as communities, as Christians and ask Him what we can do and then go do it!

Fear may be an open door for love to come in! Go—>

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Am I Living In My Shadow or His?

By Kathi Pelton

When you stand in the direct sun on a clear day it will cast your shadow onto the ground with vivid and vast definition. Why? Because you are blocking the sun that is shining directly upon you. Yet, on a cloudy or stormy day, you rarely see your own shadow as there is no sun for you to block.

Sometimes in a “stormy season” of life I find that I actually see the shadow of His wing covering me more than on the clear days that are absent of storms. When I am in full dependency because circumstances are beyond my control I become so aware that I am being kept and covered by my Heavenly Father’s love and protection. Yet, occasionally on clear days (days absent of great need) I will find myself beginning to walk in “my own shadow” and begin to venture outside the shadow of abiding in Him.

“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.” Psalms‬ ‭91:1‬ ‭

There is something that is within human nature (or sin nature) that is prone to wander, to go our own way, to be independent, to give into the desires of the flesh. Yes, even within Christians! Though we learn through experience and spiritual maturity not to give into these temptations; still they call to us and there are still times that we give in.

For me, those times come most often when my life is “carefree” and the sun is shining— when all my skies are clear. I think that it’s just that when we don’t “feel” the urgent need for dependency or divine intervention we can begin to dwell in our own shadow. I don’t actually believe that I can ever truly leave the shadow of His wing, because I am His daughter, but my focus can leave the place of abiding and I can begin to focus on my own shadow (which is just “me”).

I remember a season in my life many years ago that was months of “clear skies!” Spiritual and circumstantial summer had come. Our family was thriving, relationships were thriving, finances were thriving, our ministry was thriving, business was thriving, and even my physical being was thriving. What a glorious beginning to that summer season it was! I woke up rejoicing and went to bed rejoicing. But as that season moved from days to months I began to unconsciously abide in and “glory in” the freedom from storms more than in the rest of the Almighty. I found myself beginning to follow my own shadow rather than abiding in His. It all looked spiritual and good but I had begun to venture out of abiding in His shadow and into enjoying the shade of my own shadow because the sun was shining so brightly in my life. Toward the end of that season (which was to be a gift from God) I found myself feeling disoriented, disconnected from God, careless in my decisions and utterly aware of the faults within the lines of my shadow. My security and rest had shifted from Him to striving to seize the days of “more than enough” (as I knew that like every season, this one would be limited in its duration).

That time in my life was a wonderful lesson on how to remember to remain (abide) and rest in His shelter rather than find my security in the “lack of storms.” I think that there is such an emphasis on circumstantial “breakthrough” in the lives of believers that we forget that He is our breakthrough! He is our dwelling place, our hope, our warmth, our light, our portion, our refuge, our abiding place and our rest. This must be established in every season.

People often focus on achieving breakthrough from adverse circumstances, but we don’t prepare to live in it when it arrives. The poverty spirit can live in prosperity as much as it can in scarcity, but it manifests as greed and independence. We know how to live in need but do we know how to live in abundance? Wealth and riches can be a far greater burden than poverty because a greater responsibility and accountability is required. I believe that God wants to entrust His people with abundance but we must be prepared to remain in Him (fully dependent, sober, humble, at rest and prayerful) or our breakthrough can become our breaking. It’s so easy to find comfort in the fullness of our flesh and soul but our spirits will always long to be satisfied with Christ alone. We must remain living out of our spirits and to train our flesh and soul to find fulfillment in God.

Let us be a people who can live abundantly in every circumstance because we live in the never-changing fullness of our Savior. We live in the constant breakthrough of His love, His grace, and His victory. We live in the shadow of His wing which gives us rest.

He is breaking us out of the mindsets of “feast or famine,” because it is there that we splurge or starve rather than abide and thrive in the constant abundance of a never changing God whose promises are true and kept in every season and every circumstance.

One last thought; when the sun is in front of me, my shadow is behind me but when the sun is behind me my shadow goes before me. Let us keep the Son in front of us and not behind us!

In every season, sunshine or storm, let us say,

“I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”” Psalms‬ ‭91:2‬

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A Mic Drop Moment

By Kathi Pelton

Last night during our “Movement Night” at our church here in Fredericksburg, Virginia, Aaron Custalow shared such a powerful message. Toward the end of his message there was a moment when Aaron shares an encounter he had years ago where he had been striving to please God and running so hard for His Kingdom but it derived from a place where he was trying to “earn God’s approval” or to “return something to Jesus so because of the price He paid on the cross.” The things he was doing (preaching, praying, fasting) weren’t wrong but it came from a place of striving. God wanted his heart and for him to run with Him; not merely “for Him”. At the end of the encounter Aaron is taken to heaven and placed on the Father’s lap. He turns and sees Jesus sitting at the Father’s right side and He looks at him and says, “Aaron, I’m not mad about the cross!” (Mic drop!)

Those words penetrated the atmosphere throughout the room. How many sons and daughters in the family of God are striving but not in the grace and rest of Jesus but in a driveness to somehow earn what has been freely given? The works are good, the running hard is good but the motivation of the heart is not aligned with sonship and the absolutely free gift that Jesus gave us on the cross (we were the “joy set before Him”). When Aaron repeated the words that Jesus spoke to him, “I’m not mad about the cross” I could feel it penetrating hearts that had been striving with a sense of “I’m not doing enough!” My heart was more free to “strive to enter into His rest.” It felt like a moment of deliverance from striving.

Yes, we should give our all for the sake of His name and so that He receives His full inheritance! Yes, we should give our “yes” to all that He asks! But we do it to run with Him in joy, freedom and in rest. The price He paid did not come with a disclaimer or some small print that we forgot to read that said, “You still owe Me something.” It was and is free and HE’S NOT MAD ABOUT WHAT HE PAID! HE’S NOT MAD ABOUT THR CROSS!

These words felt like a trip wire for many returning to first love. Somewhere along the way the running after Him turned into our job or our work but we lost joy and passion. First love causes us to run but we don’t tire and we don’t leave His side. We just want to be with Him! He becomes our motivation and we do more than ever before but we don’t weary because we run from the place of “there is no where I’d rather be and no one I’d rather be with!”

When my husband and I were dating I hardly slept; I just wanted to be where he was! I’d work an eight hour day and then go to be with him and often at 3 a.m. we’d still be talking, holding hands and not wanting to leave each other’s side. When I slept I’d awake with my first thought being, “When can I see him, hold him and be in the presence of his love again today?” That is what first love looks like.

I could feel the atmosphere changing last night and I knew that it is just a taste of what is coming. A return to first love is coming to those who have walked with Him for many years and many new believers will come in as they fall in love with the One that the Church has fallen back in love with.

There is an atmosphere around a couple newly in love! It is alive, it is full of hopes, dreams, joy and it is single focused. When first love comes back upon His bride (His Church) in the way that I am seeing, it will a corporate atmosphere change. People will be drawn like a moth to the flame. We will run and not grow weary!

I find myself groaning in prayer often these days for a handful of things; two of them are for my heart of come into the fullness of first love once again and the second is that the motives of my heart are pure (purely devoted to Him). I believe that first love will cure the heart motives issue in many! We will do what we do because we just can’t get enough of Him and our thoughts are always on what brings joy to His heart.

Be encouraged! It’s as if the ceiling is cracking open and soon we will be under an open heaven of His manifest love. And remember; “He’s not mad about the cross!”

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He Delights In Helping You!

By Kathi Pelton

During a past season of refinement that I was going through, I had began praying prayers that were not familiar to my ears. They were prayers that resembled begging— they sounded like the voice of an orphan not a daughter. Since some of my needs during that time stemmed from my own mistakes, unbelief and “taking matters into my own hands”, I felt deserving of the burdens that I was carrying. I found myself apologizing to God constantly and agonizing over the fact that I’d made some choices that brought about personal hardships. My prayers went from “Thank you Father…” to “Please help God…”

One night while I was struggling with guilt, worry and regrets over my predicament I began apologizing once again and praying (begging) this way, “Please help me God…” Immediately the Lord interrupted me. He said, “Daughter, why are you praying like an orphan when you are a loved daughter?”

I replied, “Because I acted out of doubt and unbelief and now I’m paying the price. I knew better!”

With such love and compassion He spoke again, “When one of your children make a bad choice, even when they knew better, do you withhold love or help when they truly apologize and need your help out of their troubles?”

I answered, “No, I run to their aid and comfort their hurting hearts. I restore them to peace, to sonship and purity. I don’t think twice about it!”

He said, “Do you not know that I am far more patient with you? Do you know that My love for you far exceeds your love for your children? And do you not understand that it is My delight to help you?”

That night my prayer changed! It went from begging God for help to thanking Him that He takes delight in helping me. My heart released the heavy burden of the responsibility for my failure. When I repented I was released from the burden and Jesus took it upon Himself. I allowed the rain of His love to wash away the guilt, the shame, the regret and the orphan spirit that had taken hold of my heart. He baptized me anew in His mercy, grace and love. He restored my place as His daughter.

Whether what you are facing is by the fault of your own choices or even merely by circumstances beyond your control— know this: He takes delight in both helping you and comforting you! You are His beloved child and His greatest longing is to be near to you, comfort you and help you. He does not want you to suffer under burdens that you were not meant to carry. Just as a natural parent would carry something too heavy for their child to bear or pick them up to carry them when they are too tired to walk on, so will your Heavenly Father. He far exceeds any human love or compassion— even that of a father or mother.

I awoke this morning feeling the depths of His love and compassion for those who feel separated from Him because of the grief of their own failings or choices. He longs to take from you all that you cannot bear. He takes delight in helping you and setting you free. Turn your words from the words of a beggar back to the words of one who knows they are a loved son or daughter.

When my kids come to me feeling broken and burdened, I drop everything to do everything I can to both comfort and help them. God is doing that for you right now. The amazing thing is that He has no limits in His ability to help and He knows exactly what to do to comfort you. As a parent I am limited in my abilities— He is not! He dispatched angels on your behalf , He opens the doors of Heaven’s storehouse, He comes as Comforter, Redeemer, Deliverer and holds nothing back.

Thank Him! Thank Him that He delights in helping you! Thank Him that He loves you and has taken you as His own child! Don’t beg but go to Him knowing that He takes great delight in you.

“The LORD your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.” Zephaniah 3:17

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In My Weakness He Becomes So Strong!

By Kathi Pelton

Have you ever been in the midst of God launching you into new and amazing things and suddenly you are hit with the reality of your own weakness so strong that it knocks you to your knees? That is my life currently.

It’s not a bad place because it increases dependency, breaks boundaries that you didn’t know you had and humbles you to enter into the new place in a posture of being bowed down and transformed.

Each time that the Lord has brought me into something new it has required a new level of faith and trust. Of course it is such an honor to be chosen, to be called, to be asked to “go for Him”…but it requires not only my “yes” but my surrender, my death to self and the severing of any dependency on my “gifting.”

The other day I found myself in one of those “knock you to your knees” moments. Suddenly I felt as though I ran full force into a brick wall. It hit so hard that I began weeping. I asked the Lord, “What was that?” His answer took me to my knees. He said, “It’s the comfort boundary that your ‘yes’ hit.”

Oh my heart! I was immediately undone. I am keenly aware of my propensity to deeply desire comfort, traditions, the familiar and a “picket fence” life. This is probably why God keeps me from a life of human comforts; He is jealous for my heart. But in this particular moment I realized that my faith had a comfort boundary or picket fence that looked like “great faith” to the outsider but still created a limited habitation for my God that my transition had hit.

Creating a boundary wasn’t a conscious decision but when I became aware of it I also was immediately aware of every lingering insecurity, weakness and fear that existed beyond the boundary I had set. I felt cripple and it crumbled me to the ground all day long. It wasn’t condemnation but rather a dismantling of securities that are not founded in Him.

As I looked at these weaknesses and these limitations I could only weep. Then I bundled them up and carried them to the feet of Jesus. As I laid them before Him I could only bow low before my humble King. I presented my pain, my fears, my desires for the “safe road”, my weaknesses and then asked Him to be King over them.

Suddenly I was filled with strength that was so sovereign that it reminded me of when Daniel was in the presence of the Angel of the Lord and it took him to his knees,

“Then the one who looked like a man touched me again, and I felt my strength returning.” Daniel 10:18

My strength returned and I was able to get up. Then I was given courage to move beyond the familiar boundaries that my soul had erected. I felt courage imparted to me, His love filled me and His goodness carried me beyond what I had known.

Human weakness is merely the fertile soil for the strength of Christ to be made known and displayed. Throughout my life there have been key seasons where God has prepared to go beyond where I am comfortable and each time it is as if the Lord has bought a field just beyond what I’ve known and invites me to expand my boundaries to be planted there. It is usually a field that is untouched and needs great work before it can receive seed.

When I say yes this becomes the field where I my life is once again tilled, weeds are pulled (roots of weeds are removed), stones are removed, hard ground is softened and fertilizer is added. It’s a messy process and I long for the fruit of the familiar field behind me. But this process prepares me to bear new fruit and to know Him in greater ways; and to trust Him more.

If you are in the grip of the crippling reality of your personal weakness, then allow yourself to fall at His feet. Bring all of your lack, your fears, your pain and your insecurities and place them at His feet. He can turn anything into an offering of praise. Watch as He turns the broken pieces into beauty and the weakened places into strength and courage. Christ in you will become your strength and your song. You will find yourself moving beyond the boundaries that you have known and dancing on the heads of giants that mocked the “God in you!”

It’s okay to cry, to feel weakness and to be afraid…but you must not stop there! You must fall at His feet and present even what doesn’t seem beautiful to you. He makes all things presented to Him beautiful.

Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 2 Corinthians 12:9

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Has God Said?

by Kathi Pelton

There are three words that the enemy has not stopped using to abort God’s purposes, tempt God’s people and undermine God’s truth since as far back as the Garden of Eden,

“Has God said?”

Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?” Genesis 3:1

These three words brought doubt and that doubt brought unbelief and the unbelief brought forth disobedience. These three words changed mankind and introduced sin to what had been pure. I can quite honestly say that I have been tempted on many occasions to make a wrong decision based on the battle that comes when the enemy speaks these words.

My husband and I are currently in one of the biggest transitions of our lives. It is our conviction that the Lord has asked us to do something that will change so much in our lives (we will announce it soon) but the moment that the decision to obey the Lord was made, the enemy came like a serpent in the garden with those three words, “Has God said?”

The problem is that those three words are just the opening of a flood of other words and accusations that make you wonder if you truly have heard. It is the doorway to fears, doubts and anxious thoughts. “Has God truly said?”

But we can put our confidence in these words from our precious Saviour,

“My sheep hear My voice, I know them, and they follow Me.” John 10:27

The voice that questions God’s people saying, “Has God said.” Immediately brings confusion, anxiety, doubt and turmoil. Yet, when God speaks, even to correct or adjust, it brings peace, freedom, stability and resolve.

In our personal transition we have had people come and say, “Are you sure?” Or, even provide an altered interpretation for what we are hearing. These are good and spiritual people who love us but it has been a test for our souls to see if we will hear and obey by standing firm and following Him. We listen to counsel, advice, the voices of friends and family but we the weigh and discern it to the voice of our beloved Shepherd.

His voice brings a deep conviction of “Yes” but the “Has God said?” voice seeks to shatter your conviction and alter your path and actions.

I was telling a friend today that the moment we made our final decision to obey this radical change that we are transitioning into, those three dreadful words came like a wet blanket or bucket of ice water in our face. I literally wanted to scream like a woman in the midst of the most intense part of birth, “MISSION ABORT!” (not abort a baby but abort our decision!) I entertained the “Has God Said?” voice just long enough to make me want to run the other direction and choose the familiar, the easy and the known over this unfamiliar, hard and strange new land.

I’m only sharing our current story because your story may be similar. My mistake was allowing my thoughts to take the bait of “Has God Said?” and actually doubt my ability to hear His voice which brought me into an entire day of emotional turmoil and questioning.

Don’t take the bait! God will speak to you and He will be sure to “keep you from falling.” You will hear, make your plans and it is God who then will order your steps. When the enemy comes to question you so that you doubt what you’ve heard, panic and fear enters in; you can be assured that this is not the voice of your God.

So, the one thing that I can assure you that God IS NOT saying is, “Has God said?”

There is great wisdom in the counsel of trusted friends and leaders! We have been walking with many during our journey and it is an amazing safety net. Yet, you may get different opinions even in the midst of trusted spiritual counsel. In the end you must follow His voice and put your confidence in the fact that YOU KNOW HIS VOICE!

There has not been one big transition in our lives where we did not face the enemy asking us this dreaded question. It should be our sure sign that God has said! Don’t compromise your conviction or your “yes” even though the offer to taste the fruit the serpent is tempting you with looks appealing. Especially when what God is asking has great personal sacrifice attached to it. The temptation to abort the mission or change your answer can seem very appealing in the moment.

To wrap this up; if you are hearing, “Has God said?” and it brings doubt, fear, rationalization and temptation to compromise then you can know that is not the voice of God. His voice will lead so that you can follow. He brings peace, a deep knowing and forward movement that is almost involuntary because it comes from your yielded and surrendered heart. It feels involuntary but it truly is not because you voluntarily said, “Not my will, but Your will be done.”

“God, right now I pray for all of those who are in transition and I pray for all who are stepping out in faith in response to the sound of your voice. I decree peace over their hearts and minds; the peace of Christ. I pray and decree an unprecedented favor over them as they follow you. I pray for the comfort of the Holy Spirit to rest upon them and upon all who are affected by their transition. I silence the voice of the serpent that questions their ability to hear their Shepherd. The Lord rebuke you, Satan. I pray for their ears to hear and for the crooked paths to be straight, the valleys to be raised up and the mountains to be lowered before them. God, I pray that you would increase their faith, their trust and their wisdom. Thank you for your faithfulness to speak and to lead your sheep. You don’t let your sheep go astray! Your Shepherd’s rod comforts your people as we know that you will use it to keep your flock on the right path. Lord, by your power break the confusion and turmoil off of those who heard the question, ‘Has God said?’ and it robbed their peace and their joy in the journey. Break off the doubt, fear and unbelief that was attached to the question and has now affected their souls. Restore to them the joy, peace and intimacy with you in every step of their journey. In the name above every name, Jesus Christ. Amen”

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Rejoicing and Weeping Together: This Is Family

By Kathi Pelton

This week families all over our nation gathered around tables to share in the celebration of Thanksgiving. As I viewed many pictures of families smiling together I thought of the “stories behind the smiles” that often are much different than what a social media post relays.

This past week one family that we know lost their wife and mom in a car accident. Another, spent the day remembering a child that they lost recently and still another faced pending cancer treatments. Behind our family photos we are feeling the ache as we prepare for some family members to move 3000 miles away, one child was not present and is facing homelessness, one has just fallen in love and can’t stop smiling, and one couple going through the pains of infertility. A true mix of joy and pain.

There is always incredible beauty and deep felt pain in the background of every picture, every life and every family. No one is exempt from the joy or the pain. But what makes it all worth it is that we are a part of a family. We rejoice together, we weep together and we risk experiencing pain to experience the joy and beauty.

Why did Jesus go to the cross? It wasn’t to give a “hero of the day” social media post…it was to make a way for His family to be together for all eternity. Family was the “joy set before Him” as He endured the cross. Before the creation of man and woman; the Father, Son and Holy Spirit weren’t bored or unhappy but they knew that making a family in their image would be good! When sin, pain and heartbreak touched that family they knew that no sacrifice was too great to gain them back.

This is what God is still longing for! His mission has not changed. He wants to bring back all the sons and daughters who have gone astray or who are not experiencing family. There are still members of the family missing from the picture! He rejoices with the family gathered around Him and yet there is deep pain for the ones that are missing. There are stories behind the smiles that compel Him to send His sons and daughters to leave everything to try to fulfill the longing to see His family united as one.

Our family moves many times and the majority of those moves have been to go where His heart is calling us to in order to fulfill His longing for the family in that city and nation. This is the story for many who have said, “Here I am, send me.”

God loves family!! He is the One who sets the lonely in family. If you are lonely then there is family for you! They are all across the world and waiting to receive you. Don’t sit alone…find family! Wherever we have been there has always been a family there to be a part of. Is it a perfect family! No, there is pain, brokenness, imperfections and dysfunction of some sort within every natural and spiritual family but there is love, joy and beauty to be found if you’re willing to embrace the “weeping and the rejoicing.” You can’t have one without the other.

As we enter into the holiday season, let’s remember that perfection isn’t the goal…family is. So sit with the broken and comfort them, hear the voices of the ones who feel unheard, hug the ones who feel unloved and ache with the one who is struggling to find hope. Then and only then will joy come and rejoicing come. May the story behind the smiles in pictures be one that says, “Through it all I have been well loved!” That is what makes family.

Let us love well! As we finish this year and prepare for a new year let us strive to be more present with the one standing in front of us, let’s listen more attentively, love more deeply, give more readily and “feel” more sensitively.

A social media post is merely the cover photo of a book that tells a much longer story. It’s a story of joy and pain, successes and failures, gains and losses, tragedies and triumphs. The story is what makes true family; not the picture. Our God isn’t looking for the perfect family, He’s merely wanting every person ever created to be a part of His family. Let’s see His dream come true by loving well…in weeping and rejoicing we can truly be a family.

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November and December are the months of the year that most faith-based ministries experience a large decline in giving. Will you stand with us by making these months known as the best giving months of the year? To give a gift to this ministry, go to: https://www.inscribeministries.com/

It’s A New Day

by Kathi Pelton

Some days are hard! For me, yesterday was one of those days. From the moment I woke up things just went wrong. To top it off, my emotions were all over the place and I should have stopped and taken a long walk or locked myself in my closet to pray. “Should’ve, could’ve, would’ve!” was my theme of the day.

But…today is a new day! If you woke up breathing this morning then you can be sure that it’s a new day, new beginning and new opportunity to thank God, smile and know that God’s faithfulness didn’t change during your “bad day!”

“The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. I say to myself, “The Lord is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!”” Lamentations‬ ‭3:22-24‬ ‭

As I went to bed last night, pondering my “list of woes” from the day, I decreed aloud, “You are forever faithful! Thank you for this day because Your faithfulness covers every part of it.”

Each day we begin in mercies afresh and surrounded by His absolute faithfulness. His mercy and faithfulness go with us throughout each moment. They are never absent from us— He is never absent from us. Our moods change, our circumstances change and people around us change; but He is constant! He never changes and never shifts in His ways and promises. His love endures forever.

So, if yesterday was not your favorite day then know this, “Today is a new day with mercies renewed!” Begin it with expectation of joy and singing songs of thanksgiving. The verses from the Book of Lamentations above (3:22-24) go on to say this,

“The Lord is good to those who depend on him, to those who search for him.” Lamentations‬ ‭3:25‬ ‭

Enter today in complete dependency upon Him. Search for Him throughout your day; sometimes He is in clear sight but some days you have to find Him behind the distractions that come to block your view. Whatever was brought from your “bad day” into your “new day” commit it to the faithfulness of God and ask for His mercies to cover it. He is with you…great is His faithfulness!

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Sow into your new day! If this ministry has been a blessing to you, consider supporting us with a financial gift. To give go to: https://www.inscribeministries.com/

Do You Desire Blessings? Here Is The Key to Experiencing Abundant Life and Blessings

by Kathi Pelton

I remember the day as a young woman when I heard an audible voice that shouted over me, “Daughter, choose life!”

I had come from a very difficult childhood and as a young Christian I still had propensity towards self-harm and addiction. As I grew in my walk with Jesus as my Savior, I somehow continued to drag these things from my former life into my new life. My mind needed renewing and my choices needed to change. Though there was no “obviously outward blatant sin”; what was present was many agreements with death, with lies and with the identity that the enemy had scripted for my life. It was hidden sin that denied Christ’s redemption in my life.

When I finally realized that I could not thrive and grow in Christ with these agreements and behaviors I invited the Holy Spirit to transform me into who He created me to be.

One of the issues that comes with living in agreement with an identity scripted by the enemy is that it will cause you to compromise. Lies, self-hatred, victim mentalities and shame will lead you to drink from polluted cisterns. These deceptions must be fed and “nurtured” to remain in the life of the believer. I fed these lies through bulimia, negative self-talk, self-harm, shame, etc.

In the midst of my early years in Christ I would spend hours a day reading the scriptures aloud. I prayed constantly and only listened to worship music. I was battling for Jesus to have His way in my life but I had not yet “chosen life!” Often after spending hours in prayer and the Word I’d return to the idols of my past and end up throwing up all night and dwelling in thoughts of self hatred and shame. It was so confusing and defeating.

The day that I heard the words, “Daughter, choose life!” became my turnaround day. In the midst of choosing Jesus I was entertaining and believing things that were partnered with a spirit of death…death to true identity, destiny and blessings.

I knew that I had read the words, “Choose Life”, somewhere in the Bible so I searched it out. I found the words in Deuteronomy‬ ‭30:15-20,

“See, I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction. For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess.

But if your heart turns away and you are not obedient, and if you are drawn away to bow down to other gods and worship them, I declare to you this day that you will certainly be destroyed. You will not live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess.

This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live and that you may love the Lord your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the Lord is your life, and he will give you many years in the land he swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.”

I had crossed into the land of promise when I asked Jesus into my life but I brought Egypt with me. I was living like a slave in the land of freedom. I was bowing down to the idols of fears, lies, addictions that were continually usurping my freedom and kept me a “captive in Canaan.”

Then the Lord led me the the verses in Deuteronomy 11:26-28 that say,

““Look, today I am giving you the choice between a blessing and a curse! You will be blessed if you obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today. But you will be cursed if you reject the commands of the Lord your God and turn away from him and worship gods you have not known before.”

‭‭I not only needed to choose life but I needed to choose blessings! It was time to believe that He is who He said He is and to believe that “He makes all things new!” It was time to let go of the spirit of death that was killing truth and my identity in Christ. It was time to stop cursing my life while worshiping the Lord. I could no longer continue to bow to the lies that had become more powerful than the voice of my Beloved.

The day that I made a choice for life and for blessing I intentionally put the curses and death under my feet and under the blood of Jesus (and all the attributes, actions and beliefs attached to them). I began to walk in truth which meant that I had to walk away from the habits and actions associated with death and curses. I no longer feasted at the table of the enemy but began to eat from the table of the Lord each day (refusing the constant invitation to return to the foods of shame that I had developed an appetite for). I began to obey the Lord and repented of mixture and idolatry (idolatry for me was to bow daily to something that was not Christ!)

Immediately my life began to change and transform. The blessings that opened before me were almost too many to comprehend. Doors opened before me, honor came like a flood upon me, favor surrounded me and blessings overtook me. Within two years of that moment of “choosing life” I found myself traveling internationally and walking in the identity that the Lord has intended for me…His original intent for my life was being lived out.

If you are struggling with not seeing the promised blessings upon your life; perhaps ask yourself if you are choosing life and blessings or if you have agreed with the lies associated with death and curses. If so, there is no shame but there is a choice that you need to make. Choose life! Choose blessings! Choose Christ and His original intent for your life. Cast down every lie that goes against the Word of God and begin to walk in truth. Truth will align your steps with obedience and will stop compromise. It will release life, favor and blessings that cannot be contained upon you!

Today is the day of life and of blessings!

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If this ministry has been a blessing to your life will you prayerfully consider giving a financial gift of support? The holiday season is often a difficult time for support based ministries and your gift would be greatly appreciated. To give go to: https://www.inscribeministries.com/

Also, go check out our new hardbound Christmas book that will become tradition to read with your family through the month of December. It will bring you back to the manger, back to the star of promise and back to Jesus as the reason for the season!

The Sounds of Christmas by Jeffrey & Kathi Pelton https://amzn.to/2NDmWoS

He Makes The Darkness Tremble

by Kathi Pelton

As many of you know, I asked for prayer yesterday (and wow, I got it!). I have an amazing prayer team that covers us, our ministry and our family so I don’t normally “go public!” Yesterday I did because I knew that the name of Jesus makes the darkness tremble and that my faithful friends and followers would speak His name and each time they would that light would dispel darkness.

I don’t know if what I’ve been dealing with recently is warfare, just being worn-down or witchcraft (or all three) but I do know that, whatever the case is, His name sheds light and changes the atmosphere! Just the mention of His name makes the darkness tremble! Through His grace I can handle difficult circumstances and physical challenges (not that I invite them!) but when I can’t find the One my heart longs for it becomes time to make the darkness tremble at the mention of His name!

There has been a increased level of warfare coming at God’s people. I don’t say that to glorify the enemy or to focus on the battle but as God’s people have been arising with such beauty, unity, power and surrender they are taking back ground that has been long held by the enemy. His “kingdom” is being shaken by the unshakable Kingdom of God! A great army is arising…dry bones are coming to life! This has created a great battle in the heavens and on the earth.

As we witness tragedies like the death of Toby Mac’s young son, the suicides of well-loved and known young pastors, and the intense warfare over our leaders and president, we must remember that we have a name that we can all upon who rescues and saves. When I’m at a complete loss I will often just sit and repeat His name over and over. His name washes over me like waves of mercy that remove the fog and confusion. Within His name is every answer needed to rescue and save us from even the greatest despair.

As I read about the loss of Toby Mac’s, and his wife Amanda’s, sudden loss of their precious son, all I could do was speak the name of Jesus as a prayer over them. Jesus knows what it is like to feel the weight of the deepest grief and our Heavenly Father has also watched His Son die. He is acquainted with with our sorrows and deepest grief.

“He was despised and rejected— a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way. He was despised, and we did not care.” Isaiah 53:3

Jesus took all grief, sorrow, sin and hopelessness upon Himself on the cross and purchased victory. We are no longer hopeless, even in death! We are comforted by the victory of eternal life and a grace that carries us into His resurrection. Jesus not only made the darkness tremble but He defeated death and the grave! He is always the joy set before us; there is no circumstance in which we have been left to utter hopelessness. His life and light gives us an abiding place where hope is alive.

When you feel the darkness closing in around you, declare the name of Jesus and watch the darkness tremble. When death surrounds you, Jesus brings the hope of resurrection life! When sorrow overwhelms you, Jesus comforts you and lifts you up out of despair. When lack is all you see, Jesus blesses your “small offering” and feeds the multitudes; leaving you with much more than you began with (see Mark 8:8). Victory is sure, no matter the circumstance; for nothing can reverse what He has already done!

We do face sorrows and suffering but not without hope. We face battles but with victory assured, because the greatest battle is death and that has already been defeated!

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39

The darkness cannot separate you from the love of God that is in our precious Savior! He makes the darkness tremble and He opens graves with resurrection life! Just the mention of His name brings light and life.

Thank you to all who mentioned His name over my life yesterday! You brought light and lifted me above the darkness. Let’s do that for those in need today. Let’s call out on the name of Jesus for those suffering and in deep grief

. We are an army of light and His name is written upon our hearts. We will arise and declare into the atmosphere and into nations the worth of Jesus. We will shout about the victory of our King.

Let’s join Him in making the darkness tremble today! Release so much light that even graves burst open with resurrection life! An army of light is rising up declaring the name of Jesus!

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