I hear the Spirit saying that now is the time to “shed the old skin of false identity.”
It is time to allow the Lord to put your true identity upon you. You were created in His image and carry within you His Spirit to do great things. If you are living under an identity that bring you shame, distress, insecurity or self-hatred then you are not living in His image or His design for your life.
I know someone, who for many years, denied their call as a leader and as a man of influence. During the years that he denied his true identity he found that within the church he felt virtually invisible. He also continually found great opposition in what he was doing in place of the call of God on his life. He was living an identity that no one could really recognize because it wasn’t who he truly was and what he was living just didn’t fit him. Finally this man allowed God to do a deep work in his life and he stepped out of the false identity, that was based on lies he believed, and into the true identity and call that God had for him. It was an immediate transformation for this man. All of a sudden he was visible and God quickly restored all that he was created to do. He began to walk in favor and authority, as well as fulfillment.
When we live in a way or an identity based on the lies we have believed it downgrades our lives and causes the favor that we were created to walk in to dissipate.
There are men and women throughout the world who do not know Christ but understand their true identity and they experience great favor and success but their success has an emptiness on it that always leaves them striving for greater success and fulfillment. When we know our true identity and are walking with Christ as our Savior we experience favor, success and fulfillment…as well as peace.
If you recognize that you are living a false identity that has downgraded your life and causes you to spectate life more than truly live a joyful and fulfilling life; then now is the time to shed that old skin. It’s time for your upgrade!!!
First, renounce agreement with every lie that you have believed and then ask God for His truth regarding your life. In faith believe and agree with what He reveals to you. Agreement will begin the process of stepping into your true “you”. Then begin to occupy your new and true identity by taking steps to walk in it.
Now is the time for the sons and daughters of God to arise in truth, favor and authority. Now is the time for you to arise and be the reflection of the image of Christ that you were called to display to the world.
Now is the time! Let the “true you” arise for all to see!
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There is such attention being drawn in this hour to all the negative and the display of evil on earth. I often wonder if we have turned our attention away from the sacred and to focus our attention on the display of the profane?
Today I awoke with a renewed realization of “the God of wonders” in our midst. It is time to turn our eyes, our thoughts and our attention back to who he is and what he does rather than watching the display of the wicked. He is calling us to watch the wonder and turn away from the wicked.
Our God will display his wonders in the midst of the wicked and his hand will be the one that is proven to rescue and save. He is the one that shakes the earth, makes the mountains tremble and is an all consuming fire that comes to purify.
Psalm 17:7 says, “Display the wonders of Your faithful love…”
We say, “Yes Lord! We turn our eyes toward your faithful love where we will see your wonders displayed.”
He is our portion and our cup of blessing (Psalm 16:5) and in him there is no lack. It is time to stop looking at the lack that the world displays and begin delighting in the full portion and overflowing cup that we have been given. May this cup overflow from the lives that have been lavished by his unfailing and faithful love. May his faithfulness be poured out upon a world in desperate need of a drink of pure love.
This refocusing will allow our lives to be conduits of the overflow. As we surrender, as we worship and as we give ourselves fully to him we make room for his glory to be displayed and his wonders to fill the earth.
We silence our tongues from the constant testimonies of what the wicked are doing and we ask the Spirit of the Lord to loose our tongues with the sounds of his love. May the testimonies of Jesus pour forth and prophesy to the dry bones. May the songs of wonder and sounds of awe be released that overcome the shock and awe of the evil that has been displayed. And may our “laid down lives” become the posture of seeing Jesus high and lifted up for all to see.
The God of Wonders has not changed and his arm of salvation has not shortened. Our eyes have too often been pulled to look upon the profane rather than focus on the holy. It has clouded our vision for far too long.
We are not to be unaware of what is happening in the world but let us be far more aware of his wonders and his faithful love. We are “heaven’s journalists”, heaven’s sound, heaven’s reporters and citizens of heaven. Even the world is waiting for a good report and longing to see the miraculous. Many are longing for a savior and for something to give them hope. We carry that hope within us.
Isn’t it time to display the God of Wonders and become yielded vessels of his heavenly overflow?
“Yahweh, our Lord, how magnificent is Your name throughout the earth.” Psalm 8:9
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I woke up recently with these words singing in the background of my mind,
“Day and night, night and day let incense arise…”
It is my deepest cry that our God receives the incense of worship, prayer, our deepest affections, and fully surrendered lives every moment of every day. There is truly no better place to live than in the place of being a “burning one” who, through surrender, has become one with the One who gave His all.
As I heard these words what rose up in my spirit were the words, “And Don’t stop! Don’t give up!”
It was like a shout from the hosts of Heaven to His people on earth. The incense of your life is affecting the atmosphere. As you allow the scent of Christ to rise from your life, it releases an incense that brings heaven to earth and causes demons to flee. God in you and pouring forth from you shifts the atmosphere and releases the supernatural into the natural world around you.
He is worthy of it all! Let your praises arise today and do not hold back. Let no one and nothing stop you from releasing the incense of praise. Don’t stop! Don’t be stopped. This is the way that you move into alignment with heaven. Fill the earth with His glory.
The angels are even now taking down the enemies that have come against you. Our Warrior King has gone out to fight for His inheritance. Your position is to let your “incense arise”.
“But you will not even need to fight. Take your positions; then stand still and watch the LORD’s victory. He is with you, O people of Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid or discouraged. Go out against them tomorrow, for the LORD is with you!” 2 Chronicles 20:17
Be still and watch God bring forth victory after victory. Don’t stop, for God is mighty in battle and He deserves the glory and honor that will come forth from your life. You are the testimony of his unfailing love and mercy.
Hearing God has been easy for me. I love his voice and always enjoy what he has to say, but I wonder if in the familiarity if at times I’d begun to finish his sentences, assume a conclusion due to familiar filters, or even listen without fully gazing into his face to wait for him to finish. We can become so familiar with hearing someone that we are not actually listening. Hearing and listening are two different things.
We see this in marriages often. We can easily become so familiar with our spouse that we begin to half-hear what is being said with our backs turned in busy activities and assume the full meaning. Familiarity is easy and comfortable but it also robs us of depth and intimacy. There can be assumptions and carelessness that comes with familiarity.
I am not speaking into any particular issue or to anyone person particularly but myself and anyone who can relate to this. When I first began hearing the voice of God and feeling his presence, I would tremble when he’d speak. The awe of intimacy would take my breath away and cause me to listen attentively. I would listen, ponder, meditate and tremble at his word. The same is true with my husband. In our first years together when he spoke the entire world stopped and my greatest pleasure was his voice and listening to what he had to say. I loved to look into his eyes and to watch his every move.
As the decades married to my husband have gone by, I often find myself assuming that I know his every move, his looks and what they mean and that the first three words of almost any sentence can lead me to a quick conclusion so I can stop attentively listening. This familiarity can make me careless or even inconsiderate because it lacks honor, intimacy and humility. His look may not have meant what I assumed at all and if I don’t take time to ask and listen then I will “hear what I hear” through familiar assumption. If I finish the second half of his sentence in my mind and stop listening then I risk the wrong conclusion and may interpret something he has said wrongly. This is a risk and reality in any long time relationship. Familiarity can be a thief of intimacy.
From the very first day of 2021 I felt the fear of the Lord come to break me out of familiarity that has at times forgotten the depth of intimacy. It has been a time of being emptied of me to find him in a new way. When I want to find something to fill that emptied place (because this season is unfamiliar and uncomfortable) I feel a deep caution to remain emptied so that the fullness of Christ can have full reign. I don’t think I’m doing it very well but even my lack leads me again to a greater emptying.
God is not trying to hurt me but he is preparing me (and you) for the days ahead because my familiarity and half-hearted hearing will not serve me well in the days to come. I must have a renewed intimacy that empties me of me to make room for the fullness of Him. I must learn to listen to God’s voice, while looking into his face and trembling at his beauty, majesty, power and wisdom.
It feels like a reset or personal reformation that breaks me out of the familiar and takes me to a place of “awe.” This is not anything that I can do in myself but it is requiring me to get still, silent and completely dependent on his grace to awaken me from the fog of familiarity. Surrender has taken on an entirely new meaning. Waiting and listening is required, resting and yielding is necessary.
The only work for me is “willingness and waiting” so that I do not run back to the familiar. At times I want to comfort myself with what I knew before and how I functioned before because it became easy.
We are approaching Purim (February 25th & 26th), which is the celebration of the salvation of the Jewish people as told in the Book of Esther, I have been thinking about how Esther had to leave everything familiar to be prepared to be queen but also to risk her life to save her people. She had to trust Mordecai’s counsel and the steps of the Lord fully. This was not a time to assume or act hastily.
We are in a similar time and we are being prepared— emptied of all that is familiar and prepared to walk as the King’s bride and to risk everything to find favor in his sight. We need to know when to act and when to wait, when to conceal and when to reveal. Carelessness and assumption can be costly if we do not learn the fear of the Lord.
It’s time to leave the familiar and allow the deep places to be forged in our lives. It’s time to be emptied in order to see the fullness of God revealed in his bride.
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“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:11
Now more than ever are we seeing so many believers in Yeshua experiencing what I would call a “crisis of faith.” This current crisis will do one of two thing; it will either usher those who wrestle to the point of surrender into a unshakable faith or some will abandon the faith by which they were saved. My constant prayer is that not one person would abandon their faith.
I believe God has allowed this crisis, not to hurt his people but to shake the shakable areas so that we can recognize them and yield them to the firm foundation of our God.
Most of the Christian church in America has had at least a moment of disillusionment, disbelief and even a spiritual crisis as 2021 has begun. Of course we do not know what tomorrow will hold but we do know who holds tomorrow. If these days of shaking or crisis have done anything for me (personally), it is to bring me into a greater surrender and dependency on who HE is rather then on how he does things.
Even the current “prophetic crisis” can turn eyes from the man (or woman) who has become known as a prophet to the One who created him. I sense a holy jealousy in the heart of God for a bride whose eyes are fully fixed on his. A bride who will put her faith and assurance in who he is more than what he does. A bride who doesn’t turn her face away when life doesn’t look like what she thought it would. A bride who has no other “lovers” but her beloved Jesus. This does not mean that we do not have prophets but that we do not elevate them to the point that they are exalted in any way.
So, maybe the question isn’t so much to be focused on if the prophets were right or wrong but rather it should be, “Who is the bride’s faith, loyalty and focus upon?” I am not saying that there is not to be accountability in the prophetic but there also needs to be a personal searching of individual’s hearts if their faith was more in a prophetic voice or a desired outcome than in Christ alone.
We have not seen tomorrow, therefore we do not know what is ahead or what only God can do. We know that, without a doubt, some details and timings were wrong but we do not need to loose faith in God or despair because those who see in part got parts wrong. As most of my readers know, I truly believed that the president would be re-elected and although I never prophesied a second term or a re-election by January 20th- I surely thought that it would happen and was not secretive about that. Does that cause me to loose faith? No, because my hope, assurance and faith is not in my thoughts or the way I believe something will play out, but my faith is in Christ alone.
During my brother’s illness with Covid during the month of January. Many people wrote to me and encouraged me with notes, prayers and even declarations that he would “live and not die.” Some even saw visions of his healing. Yet, on January 21st he died in the arms of his wife. Should I lose hope or judge those who sent me notes saying that they saw God healing him? Never!! God fully healed him and he entered into the fullness of joy that day. Their words were not wasted because they strengthened my soul through the day and night battle that we were in. In Christ, death has lost its sting and there is only victory.
I cannot tell you what is ahead for our nation, our world or even my life. I don’t know for sure if even greater crisis will come in 2021 or if a miraculous turnaround will suddenly appear. I tend to lean toward both being present simultaneously but both not looking anything like we’d expect. So what do we do? We put our faith in the absolute, unfailing love of our God! We surrender (let go of and repent for) every place of resistance, rebellion, idolatry, anger, unforgiveness, bitterness, unholy justice, wrath and hatred. We stop pointing fingers at others for what we chose to believed and we fix our eyes on the One who is faithful and true. We humble ourselves before the Holy One and we join with heaven in declaring, “Worthy is the Lord!” He is sovereign and his dominion has no end. God has not been shaken— we have! Now we must put every shaken area upon the unshakable foundation of the Rock of Ages.
If you are in a crisis of faith then this is a gift to you so that you can cooperate with the Holy Spirit to shore up those areas of crisis and replace them with Christ. In the midst of my grief about our nation, the place that we live (in the Washington DC region), my brother’s death and so many more things— I have found that the one sure thing is JESUS! He is more than enough to believe in, hope in and put my full assurance in. He holds every answer in his hand and has not turned aside from any prayer of faith that was prayed or that will be prayed. His ways are higher and he is calling us to a higher place. A higher and purer faith. An unshakable faith.
Crisis can take you to the place of “Christ is…” Christ is absolutely faithful, absolutely holy, absolutely sovereign, absolutely beautiful, absolutely worthy, absolutely pure, absolutely powerful and absolute LOVE.
Let your crisis take you to this revelation,
“Then I saw heaven opened, and a white horse was standing there. Its rider was named Faithful and True, for he judges fairly and wages a righteous war. His eyes were like flames of fire, and on his head were many crowns. A name was written on him that no one understood except himself. He wore a robe dipped in blood, and his title was the Word of God.” Revelation 19:11-13
Grief is a quiet place that is filled with timeless memories, silent prayers and a stillness that only a few are invited into.
It’s an interesting place where “gifts” don’t seem to matter much and all the activities of normal life that filled my time now seem so unimportant. The veil between the temporal and the eternal becomes very thin in this place.
I don’t know if this is grief or just what God is doing right now but even my normal prayers fall short and all I want is to be totally surrendered. Silent surrender seems to be producing deep intercession— wordless but deep. I want to know Him as He is, I want to see His face and learn the intricate movements of His ways, I want to be like Him. Here in grief I find a deeper hunger for the truth of the words, “Be still and know that I am God.”
Rather than my confidence in Him wavering in this place of loss, it has shifted my confidence from what He will do, to a confidence in “Who He Is.” That is the ultimate victory. Understanding His sovereignty, gazing upon His beauty and pondering His eternal perspective consumes my thoughts and desires.
Some days I feel like a caterpillar going through a personal metamorphosis. It is hidden, quiet, still and yet change is happening in this place. Maybe the whole body of Christ is going through this and the grief of “what was” has become our cocoon? Maybe grief is a gift of grace to birth us into a new identity and new way of living? Maybe our tears are like the perfume that flowed out of the alabaster jar upon His feet.
I have always loved my family so deeply but in this place I only want to look into their faces and drink in the unique beauty God created them in. I want to sit next to my husband in silence and just know that he’s here with me. I want to embrace the people I love a little longer and honor others in a way that actually restores their souls.
I want to fully embrace the words, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” No more striving— no more want because I have everything I need in Him. There is nothing but Him that I can take with me when I leave this world so may He be my whole “want.”
I haven’t forgotten all that we did in 2020 to see our nation saved. It was beautiful and how honored I felt to be a part of it and to stand with nations that stood with us. When I asked my Heavenly Father about it, He just smiled with such a proud smile upon His face as He looked upon His faithful children. He will be exalted in the nations— that is the line that comes right after, “Be still and know that I am God.” We exalted Him and He received it all like a proud Papa. We danced, we repented, we wept and we shouted for joy…and it made Him smile— it wasn’t perfect but it made Him smile. My brother’s life wasn’t perfect but made Him smile— he knew he was perfectly loved. Your life makes Him smile and my “very imperfect” life makes Him smile. Perfect love looks good on us.
For me, 2020 was my year to learn the ways of “Be still and know that I am God” but 2021 has begun as a year to live what I’ve learned. I have become very still…maybe because of grief and maybe because of grace. Who He is has caused me to become still…HE IS GOD.
I saw in my spirit God sending His angels as “messengers of hope” to the earth in this hour. They are coming with messages of hope, promise, truth, comfort and love. These messages are being poured into His “messengers on earth.” These earthly messengers are to be voices of peace and hope to those who are hurting and lacking strength (their hope is fading). Words of edification will be like a glass of cool water in the heat of summer during this time. They will be more desirable than wealth, for they will refresh, comfort and strengthen the souls of men.
Proverbs 25:11-13 says,
“A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver. Like a gold ring or an ornament of gold is a wise reprover to a listening ear. Like the cold of snow in the time of harvest is a faithful messenger to those who send him; he refreshes the soul of his masters.”
What does it mean when it says, “Like the cold of snow in the time of harvest…”? Snow is known to be catastrophic upon a harvest so why does this proverb compare snow at harvest to a messenger that refreshes the soul of his master?
Solomon is referring to the practice in Lebanon of storing up the winter snow in the clefts of the rocks (mountains) to be distributed in the heat of harvest time. They would use this “storehouse of snow” to bring cold drinks to the people during the hot months. It symbolizes a welcomed refreshing and quenching of thirst.
As I write this, I am looking out at a snow-covered land. The beauty and peace is like a visual drink of cool water in a time of the colorless landscape of winter. Out of the storehouse of heaven— a message of hope has covered my yard…and covered all of Washington D.C. as well. It speaks to me the words, “Be still and know that I am God.” He will refresh our land with hope.
His angelic messengers are coming to give messages of hope and life to those who are struggling to hold onto hope. They are appointing messengers who will bring words that edify, encourage and strengthen during this difficult time. These messages will be like a cold drink on a scorching day. They will refresh and bring renewed life to many.
These “Messengers of Hope” will be like Joseph when he fed his family and the nation in a time of great famine. They will be storehouses of hope to the hungry and thirsty. In a time of famine (global pandemic, injustice, division and losses) these messengers will feed and refresh the multitudes. Their words will be water to the thirsty soul as they pour out truth and God’s good report.
It is said that the word “hope” is commonly used in the world to signify a wish; its strength being the strength of the person’s desire. But in the Bible hope is the confident expectation of what God has promised and its strength is in His faithfulness. The messages of hope coming will carry an anointing to give confident expectation to all that God has promised and an anointing that comes directly from His unwavering faithfulness.
The world will long to hear words of true Biblical hope as the desires of men are found greatly wanting. The Church will become the storehouse of snow that was preserved in the cleft of the Rock as we come into the time of the harvest of souls. We will be used to clothe men in white garments of purity and to give a glass of cool refreshing “living water” to the thirsty and parched.
Come to us heavenly messengers of hope! Make us the storehouse of hope in a dry and thirsty land.
“O God, you are my God; I earnestly search for you. My soul thirsts for you; my whole body longs for you in this parched and weary land where there is no water.” Psalm 63:1
The words, “Testing 1, 2, 3, 4” are most often heard when a person is doing a microphone sound check. It is to check clarity, levels and balance. So, it was interesting to wake up hearing these words. It is like a heavenly sound check is taking place. I then heard these words from the Book of James, chapter 1, verses 2, 3 & 4,
“2 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, 3 for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. 4 And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”
I wonder if too many of God’s people are trying to figure out what is going on by gauging the world around us? I hear statements like, “This is what I heard but this is what I see.” I surely understand and I get why there are questions, concerns and confusion. Personally, my world has been altered on so many levels but then I remind myself of Bible story after Bible story where absolute defeat turned into a greater victory than expected when the narration of events was written by God and not man. Here are just a few…
Young Joseph was given a dream and a coat of many colors that promised him authority, honor and favor but the promise did not play out like Joseph thought they would in his young mind. God’s narrative quite honestly seemed at best cruel and harsh; betrayal, slavery, isolation, abandonment, false accusation, imprisonments— but then the promise came to pass. The journey looked nothing like the dream but the outcome was so much greater and saved a nation in a time of great famine!
Then there was Moses. He went to Egypt as a deliverer of the Israelites but I guarantee you that each time he told Pharaoh to “Let my people go!” and the Israelites labor was increased and plagues came upon the land that they most likely not only questioned his authenticity but also did not view him as a deliverer. I imagine the accusations against Moses and Aaron were numerous. But God’s narrative once again played out much differently than even Moses expected. Not only were they delivered but their enemies were defeated.
Let’s not forget Lazarus! He was a personal friend of Jesus; a family friend where he found a home. Basically, Lazarus was an “insider” and counted among Jesus’ inner circle. When he gets sick his sisters know what to do…go get Jesus! Surely he will not let his personal friend die. He will come quickly and heal his friend. But no. He delays and almost seemingly strolls without any urgency to the home of his friend. He’s not only late, but Lazarus has been in the grave for days. The pain felt by all is real and raw. The questions of “where were you” and “if only you had been here” were intermingled with such deep grief. Yet, once again our God was not late but He was narrating a different story than anyone understood. The natural was not going to dictate the sovereignty of God or His ways. Although Lazarus was dead and it appeared final (nothing could be done)— then Jesus showed up and spoke, “Come forth!”
Last, Jesus came through a virgin birth, lived a sinless life, healed the sick, gave sight to the blind, fed thousands with only a small lunch and raised the dead. His disciples knew He was their long awaited Messiah. They had such hope, such promise and so much confidence in Him. They had seen the miracles and watched power flow from His hands. They knew that victory had come into a world of oppression. But then their precious Jesus was arrested, betrayed, beaten, crucified and put into a gave. Can you imagine the grief, the shock, the confusion and the questions. I am sure that there were many moments of great division as His disciples and followers tried to figure out what had just happened and who was at fault. I would imagine that there were fingers pointed at one another and accusations made. Pain often looks for a reason or for “what went wrong and who is to blame?” It was not a pretty sight…where had love and unity gone? But then the third day came…God’s narrative once again prevailed in the greatest victory known to mankind happened in the greatest moment of division and despair.
Here we are again…
2021 has begun with what many are perceiving as the greatest defeat they have seen in their lifetime. An increasingly horrific global pandemic, oppression and evil manifesting like the plagues of Egypt, economic ruin for so many and the shock in America upon a church that prayed, repented for the sins of their nation, humbled themselves before the Lord and walked in faith regarding what they heard the Spirit speaking to them…then the opposite happened. But even when the narrative on earth looks nothing like what we thought it would— does that mean that we have been defeated? It surely looks like absolute defeat (for our freedom, for the unborn, for our children, for our safety and for righteousness to prevail). But God…
In this place of what appears to be contradiction to our faith suddenly fingers are pointing at one another, people are in pain, in grief and in confusion. They are looking for someone to blame or clinging to the narrative that they thought would occur. But God’s narrative always has a deeper work to be done.
What if the “testing of our faith” is upon us so that we become steadfast, complete and lack nothing? Maybe in the midst of emotional turmoil and deep grief we should stop trying to figure out the Almighty and begin to “count it all joy” that our faith is being tested. Maybe we should stop pointing fingers and instead raise our heads so that we see the face of God. Maybe…just maybe, a much deeper work is being done.
For me— my personal losses and pain is bringing up dross that needed to be removed. Places that I didn’t even know that I had held unresolved issues have suddenly been uncapped so that I can be washed and purified by His blood.
This is my “sound check” moment. It’s like God has put a stethoscope to my heart and is saying, “Testing, 1, 2, 3, 4.” I believe this is happening for all who are willing. He’s clearing and purifying the sound of our hearts. He’s balancing and aligning us to His heart, His ways and His pure sound. He’s removing every obstacle that blocks the pure sound of His good news and perfect love.
This is our James 1: 2,3,4 time. Let us count it all joy and then watch a greater victory than we ever imagined come forth as we see a bride without spot or wrinkle emerge. We have not been defeated…we are having our faith tested and it is time to allow Him to make every adjustment needed.
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“Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.” Hebrews 11:1
When God speaks a promise to me, through His still small voice, through a prophetic word or through His written Word, I access it by faith.
This amazing gift of faith is the key that opens new realms of experiential peace and joy. Faith is a three strand cord in my life; believing, receiving, and rejoicing. When God speaks, first I believe it as truth, then I receive it as reality, and then I rejoice because I am confident that He will do it.
This world, in its unredeemed state, teaches us to “wait and see” before getting overly excited about much of anything. It trains our thoughts to become skeptical about things hoped for or promises made. We are told to expect the worst so that we are not disappointed. It is a culture that throws ice water on those who have childlike faith. Unfortunately, I see this even in the body of Christ. Many have become skeptical about the promises of God. It is time to see your faith fully restored! God is restoring the assurance of faith to His sons and daughters.
Someone recently said to me that they were “sure hoping” that what they were standing in faith for was actually God. I immediately responded by telling a story from when I was a young believer.
I had been growing in the Lord and was beginning to take big steps of faith as I heard His voice, but then would become fearful that my “faith” was based merely on my desires and not truly His voice. I didn’t trust my hearing! These thoughts would steal my peace and joy because they stole my confident assurance. One day the Father sat me down to have a “Father/daughter” talk (I love those moments). He said,
“Daughter, a good parent is always watching over their little ones. They know where they are, what they are doing, saying, and wanting. Children love to tell their parents their desires; just as you do with Me. Do you think I am unaware of what you are thinking? I know what you are believing for and it is up to Me, as your Father, to make my voice known to you. Stop worrying about what you are believing for and have faith that I will not let you go astray. It is MY job to make sure that you hear My voice and no other. Have faith in My ability to make sure that you hear Me and follow Me.”
This was such revelation to me! I was young and spending way too much time worrying about “getting it right,” rather than having faith that He would make sure that I heard Him and would be taken to the right place. Such peace and joy came as this burden was removed. My prayer life changed from often agonizing pleas for His help to confident praise of His goodness, protection, and love. I was able to take His hand and simply walk forward, knowing that He was leading the way.
The enemy will always try to hit faith with fear. It will often come with the words, “Did God say that?” That question alone is the doorway to fear that will rob you of assured and confident faith. This question is like the enemy inviting you to sit you down and have a counterfeit “father/child” talk. If we sit down and entertain this question then peace and joy is robbed. Moreover, faith and trust in the confidence of your Father’s care for you is turned to doubt and being double-minded.
John 10:27-30 assure us that we will hear His voice,
“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. I and My Father are one.””
We are His sheep (His children and most valued possession). He makes sure that we hear His voice so that we can follow. The enemy cannot snatch you out of the Father’s hand, but he will surely whisper questions that will attempt to steal your peace.
It is the Holy Spirit’s job to make sure that you hear His voice. If you have heard Him and are standing in faith for a promise, then know that He has taken your hand in it and will lead you.
Don’t get stuck on the details of the promise (how the journey will look) because rarely does the journey to our promise look like what we thought it would. And more often than not the fulfillment is much better than we believed for! Many times my interpretation of something has added details and presumptions that were not accurate. It has been vitally important in my life not to begin to doubt or fuss with turns—or even setbacks—that appeared opposite of the promise. As I remain in confident assurance I always find myself in the manifest truth of Ephesians 3:20,
“Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” My “details” would have left me lacking but His path always has taken me to even greater joys and heights!
Twenty years ago I was given a postcard with a verse on it that hung in my home until recently, when I gifted it back to the person who originally gave it to me. The verse is from Philippians 1:6,
“…being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.”
He began it and He will complete it! In YOU! I am the most unlikely person to live the life that I’ve been living for so many years. I was such a fearful child who had almost no confidence, felt insignificant and thought my life would be a train wreck. Then Jesus came in and I just stand in awe as I see the work that HE began and is completing in me.
It’s time to get happy, to stand in awe, to live in confident assurance and to rejoice in the victories that He has promised even before they are seen. If He has shown them to you then they are sure! Take His hand and know that He will make His voice known to you. Put your faith in Him even more than any promise because HE IS THE PROMISE! Every promise is realized as you have faith in Him.
“Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out! “For who has known the mind of the LORD? Or who has become His counselor?” “Or who has first given to Him And it shall be repaid to him?” For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen.” Romans 11:33-36
(This article was written three years ago today but it is so appropriate for now.)
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I was thinking about how often people day dream of plans that are being made for a special day. We rehearse them in our minds, picture the moments that will make beautiful memories and even invite others into those dreams. I have been a daydreamer (and night dreamer) since I was a little girl and I would get lost in that place where hopes and dreams are played out with childlike wonder. Yet, often in this world (not always but often) they don’t quite reach the height of our expectations and desires. That is just part of life here on earth. Weather happens, sickness happens, losses happen, disagreements happen and now even pandemics happen. We learn to be grateful for what we have even if at times these moments fall short of what we dreamed.
As I was pondering these thoughts today (while dreaming about some upcoming holiday plans), I heard the Lord so excitedly proclaim to me, “Oh Honey, heaven will not fall short of your dreams— it will exceed your thoughts and dreams so immensely that you may just stop and stare in wonder for the first 10,000 years!” Then he said, “Did you know that every disappointment and dream that fell short on earth will be restored to you in heaven?”
Immediately I saw a vision of where the “things of earth” had disrupted precious plans and moments. I saw weddings that didn’t happen due to this pandemic, losses that came unexpectedly, times where rain poured upon your “parade”, pain stole your joy, babies that never made it into their mommies arms and so many other things. But they will all be restored! Your plans and dreams were not in vain! Heaven has held all of these things in it’s timeless and redemptive protection. Every tear will be washed away, all pain will cease and the ability to experience a never ending joy (that can never be obtained on earth) will be yours— and yours for all eternity.
Nothing is lost in Christ! It all gains in worth, beauty and value. We will never have to experience “living with loss” or “praising through the storms” again. The closer we get to Jesus, the more we gain perspective of the glory set before us. Our race here on earth can be much less than “perfect” but the One who purchased our entrance to eternal love and joy is at the finish line just waiting to embrace us!
I do find that even this short walk here on earth, with Jesus as my Savior, has surely exceeded my hopes and expectations— even in the midst of imperfect executions of plans or dreams. He still continuously surprises me with beauty that takes my breath away…imperfect beauty but beauty nonetheless. The perfect will come!
So, if your dreams have not quite gone according to plans or if you have had more than your share of losses— know this, he is holding all that appeared lost or stolen in his hands and they will not disappoint! Earthly redemption will not even compare to the redemption we will receive when we enter the place that he has been building for us since before time began.
Begin to dream higher and hope beyond this life. You will not be disappointed!