Saturday, December 26, 2015

small beginnings



often,
"[[I am a God of small beginnings.]]

just look at My Son. "


the hands of the One who stretched out the heavens,
on whose palms we are inscribed upon...
the hands of the One whom through all things were made,
that contain the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind...
the hands of the One who holds all things together,
and yet carefully captures every tear...

the hands -- completely clean, never once carrying their own sin, that willingly reached out and broke through every rational, medical and Mosaic Law thinking and cleansed the most unclean.
the hands that brought healing and freedom and deliverance and restoration to all that came hungry and needy, knowing that to just brush up against those fingertips meant life.
the hands that split the bread while His lips split open with thanks-- as they all watched in awe, as they all ate and had their fill--- eating from the very hand of God.

the hands that clenched tight, wrestling in prayer, as the blood sweat through His pores.
the hands that gripped and rubbed raw and dug deep into the wood that they carried, knowing full well He would soon hang upon it.
the hands, the very hands, that bled crimson red, bearing the nails as He bore our sickness and sin.

the feet of the One whose footstool is the earth,
at which John, the Beloved disciple fell down at as though he were dead..
the feet of the One whose footsteps we are to follow in, even if in suffering,
that the enemy of our souls is already placed under.
the feet of the One who alone tramples the waves of the sea,
that wore down and covered dirty the sandals that the one crying out in the wilderness, preparing the way, declared he was unworthy of even untying.

the feet that took ground and authority and brought the Kingdom of heaven to earth at each step, yet were
humbly washed with the tears and hair of that desperate Mary of Bethany, as she poured out on them the fragrance of her life.the feet that demonstrated how lovely on the mountains they are bringing good news, announcing peace and bringing good news of happiness, announcing salvation, and saying to Zion, "Your God reigns!"
the feet of God that walked with man--showing man how to walk with God..
the feet that purposefully trudged that road to Calvary, feeling the weight with each step of the burden of humanity He carried and the destiny He'd meet at His destination on that hill in the place called The Skull.
the feet, the very feet, that bled crimson red, bearing the nails as He fulfilled that Genesis 3 prophecy, 'you will bite her child's foot, but HE will crush your head'
.

those holy, pure, strong hands.
those sacred, dignified, beautiful feet.

first appeared so small.
so tender and fragile. so insignificant and weak.




so Beloved,
[do not despise that humble, hidden, lowly work. ]

both inward-- in those deepest places within you, where I'm masterfully working, beginning, transforming..
and outward-- in those unexpected even naturally undesired places around you, where I'm calling you to serve and love and lay your life down..

because those places
the ones that seem the most small. the most insignificant.
there's something
holy, other-worldly in them.



and just as that Babe wrapped in swaddling clothes,
was missed-- missed,
altogether looked-over,
just because He didn't come as they expected,
as they hoped,
as they wanted.

let's be careful not to miss Him-- today, dear one.
even if that thing, that work, that calling,
looks different-- maybe even smaller than we envisioned or anticipated.

He knows what He is doing.
we just need eyes to see it.


Thursday, December 3, 2015

misplaced affections--removing the mask to our hunger.

this is a season of the Lord realigning and redirecting misplaced desires and affections.
revealing those areas in our hearts where we think we will be most satisfied and what our affections are set on-- that are really just a mask over the Holy Spirit.

He's saying..

>>
that thing
that place
that person
that opportunity
that dream
even that godly work/ministry
that is consuming your thoughts and affections.
that you're believing will bring "the more" you want in life but seems out of reach or unattainable, even just for this season.
[[it's not what you're actually hungry for.]]
He has already come and given you life and life abundant. it is ALWAYS attainable.
and your desire for MORE is good-- it's from Him.
but if it's bringing you to a place of discouragement, thoughts of failure, bitterness, disappointment, condemnation, thinking that God is withholding--
then beloved, your affections are misplaced and your hunger is being masked.
<<

isn't that just like the enemy.. to take a desire that is intended and has the power to drive us into more of Him and flipping it around and making it drive us into discouragement and defeat.He is realigning our hearts with Him, setting all of our affections on Him, unmasking that God-given hunger and passion for FULL LIFE as a beautiful catalyst into more of Him-- not dissatisfaction and waiting for "someday".
What is masking your hunger and desire today? What earthly or even "spiritual" pursuit and longing is parading around in your mind as the fulfillment to what God has for you or the answer to full life-- taking the place of your pursuit and longing for more of the Spirit?

because beloved, He already HAS given us EVERYTHING we need for LIFE and GODLINESS. (2 Peter 1:3).
don't be enticed into thinking that it's found anywhere other than in His divine power.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Arise.


 you are chosen. selected. honored. adored. beloved. accepted. legitimate. adopted. holy. free. new.

you can't go back.
there's nothing there for you anymore.
you belong to ME.

come away with Me.
be swept up in My love.

>>the lies have had their time.
now is the time to
[arise in your thinking]<<

Friday, October 23, 2015

do not fear the road ahead.



[do not fear the road ahead]

if you try and do things in your own way and strength and rush My timing--
you will surely become overwhelmed and weary.

the peace is in My presence.
let Me be what overwhelms you.



for there is nothing more overwhelming than the love,
grace and plans I have for you.

[do not fear the road ahead].

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

unlocked doors.


 I believe we are in a season of shifting-- and all of the shifting is causing things to be loosed spiritually and physically.

the word on my my heart as of late is that He is the Initiator of change.

and I believe that He's shown me that, for the Body at large,
He is unlocking doors.
He is releasing freedom
and He is opening new opportunities and revelation.




He is doing and moving far more than we could ask or imagine in these days.


And so I encourage you to press in--
what is He initiating in your life in this season?
what doors are being unlocked in your life?
where is He bringing you out of and what is He bringing you into?
how can you walk in step and embrace more fully the change He is initiating?


be encouraged, beloved,
>>your seasons are appointed.
He knows where He's bringing you.
things that seem to have not budged for years are beginning to shift.
the places that you have felt stuck in are being flung open.
promises are being fulfilled and will begin to start manifesting in the natural.
the word
RELEASE is over His Church. <<

Release from sin and bondage and fear and strongholds and burdens and present trials.
and a release of what has been prayed for and contended for and hoped for--
a release of opportunities for the advancement of the Kingdom in your life and family and city and nation,
and a release of greater understanding and revelation of who He is, who you are in Him and what He is doing and saying.

[Step out,
and step in]
.






Monday, September 28, 2015

withering, fading, and remaining.



"all flesh is grass,
and all its beauty is like the flower of the field.
The grass withers, the flower fades
when the breath of the Lord blows on it;
surely the people are grass.
The grass withers, the flower fades,
but the word of our God will stand forever."  (Isaiah 40:6-8)




this life that we are called to, Church--
is not about comfort.
it's about
correct perspective.


and i hear the Lord saying strongly,
[be led by the eternal,
not by the temporal].




because oh how fleeting and passing and fragile this life is.
and there's a comfort and a hope that every trial and pain and struggle is momentary,

but there's also a weightiness and cause for repentance behind the reality that every fleshly ambition, accomplishment, pursuit, motive, response, and desire is vain--just as quick to fade and wither,
and even more than that-- if we're led by them, our lives will be in vain as well.

 only that which has Kingdom substance will remain.
whether that's our dreams, desires, pursuits, motives-- and more so, our souls.


and so the questions are there..
what are you going after?
what are you holding onto that He's calling you to let go of?
what is hindering your pursuit of Him?
if our trials are momentary, but our heart condition in the midst of them has eternal implications-- how should we be responding?
if every seemingly mundane task can reap everlasting fruit if done to and through and for Him-- how should we approach even the smallest work? Every late night feeding, nursing mama.. every data entry, young professional.. every handshake.. every smile.. every hug..
if this side of eternity is like a snap of the fingers compared to what is to come--what should we be focused on?
if we could really see every single piece of this life as He sees it-- how would we be living differently? 


because it's not about comfort.
it's about correct perspective.

Father, give us eyes to see.
and the obedience to follow how You lead.
because Your word will stand forever,
and this life certainly will not.









Thursday, September 24, 2015

positioning; lessons of heart soil and humility.


 [It's all about positioning]

the words He deposited into my heart this week.

for now is the time to position yourself to receive, dear one.

a simple and seemingly silly question.. how do you show you're ready to receive something?
the picture He's given me is this,
arms extended,
hands together-- open and empty.

humility and readiness.

because it can rain all day long,
but if we're not humble enough to reach out and receive,
and ready with open and empty hands when it comes--
we won't retain any of it.
the refreshment and sustenance will be only surface-level and short-lived.

and Beloved, He is calling us to more,
and He certainly has more that He desires to pour out.

but it is all about
positioning.


namely-- the position of our hearts.

what's the condition of our heart soil?
is it not even compatible with growing life--like a path?
rocky and shallow?
full of thorns?
or is it good, fertile soil?

because seeds can be scattered your direction and sown day in and day out,
but if our hearts are not positioned--ready to receive--
those tiny sources full of life and fruit potential
will lay dormant.
if ever springing up and taking root,
only for a short season..
before those roots are choked out and those life-bearing buds scorched by the sun and withered. [Matthew 13:1-9]
because let's be honest,
distractions these day are quick to overtake and choke out,
and the reality of trials and circumstances beating down don't show partiality.

and it can seem overwhelming, even impossible (because it is.. on our own)..
to make our heart-soil ready, receptive, compatible with life..
but there's a call in Hosea to
break up the fallow ground of our hearts (read more from a post on this here).
and even still.. it's like..
God, how?

and the words in James 4:6 broke through.

["God opposes the proud,
but gives grace to the humble."]



the only way we can receive anything,
even the grace that we need to change the position of our hearts,
is through
humility.

arms outstretched..
showing need, openness, desperation-- even vulnerability.

hands open..
no longer clenched-- whether out of fear, rejection, anger, bitterness, isolation..

hands empty..
free from distractions and works and everything self--
self-pity, self-hatred, self-preservation, self-righteousness, self-sufficiency.

I don't know about you,
but I am desperate for that grace that He gives.
desperate enough to do something about it.


because we're called to bear fruit,
and fruit that remains. (John 15)

and for being a culture and a generation and a church
that is saturated in teaching and studies,
with seeds scattered left and right,
we sure don't have a whole lot of fruit in our personal lives
or individual spheres of influence
to show for it.


because the only fruit that truly remains,
is the fruit that reproduces.

>>so maybe it's time to switch our focus and effort and time from saturating our soil with innumerable seeds of all shapes and sizes,
and instead examine our heart soil,
humble ourselves
and position ourselves,
so we can truly receive the Incorruptible Seed--
the only One who can reproduce His very life within us. <<

"...you have been born again not of perishable seed but of imperishable,
through the living and abiding Word of God." 1 Peter 1:23.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

the path of life.

 There's a simplicity in following Jesus and knowing God in this life that has been lost,
and I feel the heart of the Father so deeply calling His Bride back to that place.

and it's found in Psalm 16:11, one you're probably well acquainted with.

"You make known to me the path of life;
in Your presence there is fullness of joy;
at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore".

and as I was meditating on this-- saying God.. am I missing something You're wanting to show me through this?

"..in Your presence there is fullness of joy;
at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore"

and then He made the connection.

that is "the path of life".

that is the road He desires that we walk.

that is the journey that He's set us on.

[fullness of joy in HIS presence.
pleasures forevermore at HIS right hand--> where Jesus sits.]

that is what we are all searching out and grasping for.

that is the answer to..
what does He have for me?
what is His will for me?
what is my ultimate calling?
what is my first ministry?
what does He have in this season?
what does He want to work in me?
what is the point of my life?


every fortune teller, tarot card, horoscope, sign in the sky, coincidence, hope of providence..
a desperate attempt to find the path of life we are to walk..
to ensure that we make the right decision.

even in the Christian circles, we make our life out to be this set maze with constant crossroads and stop signs, where we have to perfectly make the right choice in seeking out God's will in order to not "miss out" on the path He has intended for us.

every futile attempt at happiness and satisfaction.
whether through human relationship or applause or addiction or money or even ministry.
because it's ingrained into our souls from creation-- we want to live life to the fullest.


but boy, do we make a mess of it.
and maybe we're still missing it.
Christian and non-Christian alike.


because He makes it clear..
He shows us "the path of life".
[in the original language, Psalm 16:11a is
You make known to me "the way of living to live fully alive,,
like the green of vegetation,
and the fresh, flowing of water
and the reviving and renewal of springtime"].

the way we all want to live, if we're honest.
and the one thing we probably all want shown to us.

and the rest of the verse simplifies what that way of living fully alive is and how to find it.
knowing and experiencing and living in this--
being filled with the fullness of joy in Him--
finding everything we desire and need in Him, not needing to look anywhere else.
Full-- FULL!!
no lack; no void.
complete in joy in Him.at His feet and in His presence.
because we are convinced that every delight and pleasure and good thing is found at His right hand-- IN JESUS.


With the original definitions in brackets, this verse I was well acquainted with took on a whole new light.

"You make known to me the path of life [the way of living to live fully alive; like the green of vegetation, the fresh, flowing of water and the reviving and renewing of spring],
in Your presence [face] there is fullness [satisfaction, abundance, fulfillment, to have one's full of, to have in excess] of joy [gladness];
at Your right hand [in Jesus] are pleasures [everything pleasant, delightful, sweet, lovely, beautiful, sweetly sounding] forevermore [ strength, enduring, everlasting, continual, perpetual, constantly]".

This is the way of living fully alive.
this is what life is really all about.
it's really not all that complicated--

the abundance of joy, gladness and satisfaction that is literally overflowing in excess;
every pleasant, delightful, sweet, lovely, beautiful, sweetly sounding thing,
found all --perpetually, constantly, without end, from everlasting to everlasting--
in face of Jesus Christ.

This is what He desires to make known to us.
This is what He has for us.

maybe it's less about right or left turns, Church..
and more about a fixed gaze on His face,
so we can be a Bride actually alive and in love-- complete in joy in our Beloved.


and as we find ourselves on "the path of life"-- we can certainly trust that our Shepherd will faithfully lead and direct and guide our every step. 

Monday, September 14, 2015

the bitter fruit of disappointments and the sweet taste of His appointments.



freshmen year of college.
one of the best years of my life.
full of life and Spirit and transformation. it's where i found wings to fly spiritually.
it's where by His power and grace-- I broke free.

the walls fell down and my heart became fully open.


fast-forward to this past season.
and here i am,
face to the ground.
crying out..

God, I need to hear Your voice on this.

because when you know how it feels to fly,
there's no mistaking when you're weighed down, held back,
with a heart no longer fully open but shut down.
even if just in a single area. 

and my heart resounded with David,
"Oh that I had wings like a dove then I would fly away and be at rest!" (Psalm 55:6).

and picture after picture would be given to me from the Lord by people,
of birds.
the one I'll always see in my mind was of a bird held in two hands.
unable to fly. held back. restrained. trapped.

and i wondered and i asked and i sought.. who do the hands belong to? What do they represent?
He showed me I was the bird.. but Lord, whose hands are they?
and then He made it clear..
the hands were mine.



now,
I bet if I asked all of us to write down our stories,
there would be one string of commonality throughout every single one.

[disappointments].

we live in a fractured, broken, hurting world-- that's desperate for wholeness.
and so we all have experienced it.
whether it's that loss.
of that loved one.
that relationship.
that opportunity.
that season.

whether it's that place of lack.
that unfulfilled dream.
or desire.
or promise.


for me, it was a combination of more than one.

and with each one I knew the truth in my head of His hand on my life, and I declared that I trusted Him and I'd keep walking.

but over time, it became real obvious.
that my heart was becoming more and more shut down.

And that's when He revealed to me.


I had let my disappointments become a disappointed heart.

[all because--if I'm honest,
He didn't do things the way I wanted. ]
and it's a stronghold that's heavy on our generation and our culture.
the sin of self-entitlement.

and the lie that has plagued man from the beginning..
"God is withholding from you..."


and like Eve.. i bit hard into that fruit.

and let me tell you,
I have held on to my disappointments and the way I wanted things to happen so fiercely in a desperate attempt to regain what I had lost or hoped for or envisioned,
that I didn't even realize that what my hands were really gripping were the wings with which my soul once soared.


and as i lay face to the ground,
crying out,
"God, I need to hear Your voice on this".
A picture flashed across my mind.

i scrambled to an old journal,
back from, you guessed it, freshmen year of college.
and there it still was.
a word i saved from a late night meeting at McDonalds with a girl who poured into me.

a word that I had never thought about since until that very moment.

a word that God faithfully gave me in my season of new-found freedom,
that He KNEW i would need in the years to come when that freedom was threatened.


[turn disappointments into His appointments].

and that's when revelation sank in.
and repentance came heavy.
and I made the choice to open my hands to let that bird fly.

and it wasn't just one time.
this thing is continual.

a daily exchange.

turning the sin of self-entitlement into gratitude.

and where Eve and I used to have common ground,
I'm no longer giving that deceptive voice one second thought.
i'm choosing to look at the hundreds of other trees in the garden that God graciously said, Yes! Eat! enjoy, My child.
not the measly one that was kept from me--ultimately for MY GOOD.

and in this place,
of humbling myself before His omniscience,
resting in His goodness..


[He has taught my feet to dance upon disappointment.]

"no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly" (psalm 84:11).

"those who seek the Lord lack no good thing" (Psalm 34:10)


Maybe your disappointments have become a disappointed heart,
or maybe your fears have become a fearful heart, your strivings a striving heart,  your weariness a weary heart,  your doubts a doubting heart..
whatever has caused your heart to shut down, whatever lie you have believed..

receive this word given by a dear friend of mine at church last week,
"strip off the lies.
strip off the assumptions.
I have set you free.
you are free to be what I called you to be.
free to soar.
press into Me.
only you can do what I called you to do. No one else.
so fly. fly free. "



a song that I came across just after He ministered to me through all this.. may He teach you to dance upon your disappointments, fears, doubts, weariness, striving and anything else trying to keep you held back.

Friday, August 7, 2015

be encouraged.

the words He gave me this morning,
may they be an encouragement for all those who have loved ones that you are praying and believing and waiting to come to Him,,
and cause for hope, joy and greater seeking in our own lives and pursuit of Yeshua.


["I am not hidden, says the Lord.
My way is not obscure.


you WILL find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.
"you will seek Me and find Me, when you seek Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the Lord" (Jeremiah 29:13-14)

you have to,
beloved--you need to,
believe that I am a Rewarder of those who diligently seek Me.

(Hebrews 11:6) ]



Grab hold of those promises, beloved.
and take heart.
He makes straight the path of those who acknowledge Him in all of their ways.

are you seeking Him, dear one-- more so.. are you believing that He rewards those who diligently seek Him, namely with Himself?
in the moments when He seems distant, far off, and you just can't seem to enter His presence know,
there is no method and no striving that can draw you closer to Him.. but lay hold of the promises of Hebrews 11:6 and Jeremiah 29:13-14 by faith, dear one.

are you acknowledging Him in all things-- in every decision, every encounter, every conversation, every blessing, every trial, every dream?
the Hebrew word for "acknowledge" (yada) actually carries the idea of coming to know someone by observing, reflecting and experiencing. How are you coming to know Him in all things? Are you allowing every single area of your life to be a catalyst and draw string into knowing and seeing and experiencing Him-- that you might simply know Him more?
the English definition of acknowledge is "accept or admit the existence or truth of something; to admit, confess, accept and recognize". Confess the truth of who He is and what He says in ALL things, friend. Recognize His hand at work in your life, in the smallest and the biggest and the most mundane and the most unique things and moments. Admit who He is, and the reality of your need for Him-- in ALL things.
are you looking to the One who promises to give wisdom without holding back to those who need it, or are you looking to your own earthly understanding, the insight of man, and human reasoning?


>>He is not hidden, beloved.
and His way is not obscure (doubtful, uncertain, unclear, unknown, vague).
the antonym of obscure is reveal, illuminate, clarify.

believe Him for revelation, for clarity, for illumination. <<


for now is the time to press into our God, our Creator, our Bridegroom, our Friend.
you will not be disappointed.



"Seek the Lord while He may be found;
call upon Him while He is near;
let the wicked forsake his way,
and the unrighteous man his thoughts;
let him return to the Lord, that he may have compassion on him,
and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon."  (Isaiah 55:6-7)



Thursday, July 30, 2015

do NOT fear.

 i believe we are in a season where the Lord is desiring to eradicate fear in His people.
and He's doing it by drawing His Bride closer.
greater revelation, greater encounters, a clearer picture of who He is-- knowing Him, seeing Him. This is what removes all fear. [Him--perfect Love].

a sister shared a word in church a couple weeks back and it's been a theme along with many others.. but it's stuck with me most clearly.

"if you saw My face-- you would fear no thing.''
and so the question on my heart has been "Beloved, are you beholding Me? are you able to see My face? have you set Me always before you? Are there things in the way--blocking and distorting and hindering your ability to see Me clearly?-- and if so, what are you willing to put aside, detach from, even remove, so that You can be free to see Me and know Me?"

there's a lot of talk right now-- prophetic, hearsay, questioning, doubting, Biblical, fear-based, faith-based.. lots and lots of talk.
about the days we're living in, the hour of history this is, where we fall right now in Biblical prophesy, the state of our nation &
the rapid spiraling down into darkness and injustice that is taking place, homosexual marriage, Planned Parenthood, wars and rumors of wars-- nuclear weapon deals, standing with or against Israel, the state of our economy-- red flags to another economic meltdown, the Chinese stock market crashing, the Shemitahs, the blood moons, potential ginormous earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes.

we're shaken at the talk of a shaking coming.
but beloved, HE is the One who tells us about these things-- it's all throughout the New Testament and prophetically throughout the Old.

and we read that "there will signs in the sun and moon and stars, and on the earth distress of nations in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and waves,

men's hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken." [luke 21:25-26]


I can't say what exactly is ahead, but i do know that the Day draws near.
and I can't say exactly what all is going to take place and when,
but i am here to say that the Body of Christ is NOT meant to be the ones whose hearts fail from fear.
"Jehovah of Hosts who is bringing [His return and the exchange of this world for His Kingdom] to pass, who is moving all things toward this culmination is with us"--

and we are called to diligently watch, and dare I even say, eagerly anticipate.


and so,
I want to give you this Psalm [Psalm 46] that you've probably all read before, and probably even have bits and pieces memorized..

but my prayer is that you read it with fresh, open eyes and receive it on fresh, fertile heart soil-- so as to truly SEE the One who is with us and for us.


God is our refuge [the person to whom one flees; shelter; hope; place of trust]
and strength [might; force; boldness; power],
a very [wholly; speedily]
present [to be enough, to cause to encounter]
help in trouble [narrow; tight; enemy; affliction; tribulation].
>> THEREFORE<< we will NOT fear
though the earth gives way;
though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains tremble at its swelling.

selah [pause and carefully consider-- meditate on it].
There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy habitation of the Most High. [Awareness of His closeness fills us with joy even in the bleakest of times].
God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved;
God will be her help when morning dawns.

the nations rage, the kingdoms totter;
He utters His voice, the earth melts. [Awareness of the power just behind His voice].
The Lord of Hosts is with us; [God of the armies of Heaven is with us--you, and me].
the God of Jacob is our fortress. [Awareness that He is not merely God of the big {the God of Israel}, He is God of the small, the individual, the details {the God of Jacob}.

selah [pause and carefully consider--meditate on it].
come, behold the works of the Lord,
how He has brought desolations on the earth. [Awareness of His sovereignty].
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
He breaks the bow and shatters the spear;
He burns the chariots with fire.
"Be still, and know that I am God. [not only a general call for His people to quiet themselves before Him to know Him-- but a command to the tossing waves and treacherous wind, to the enemy and all the forces of hell-- to be still, to cease, to come to an end,  and know that He and He alone is God]. 
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!" [Awareness of the ending of all the chaos-- HE WILL BE, not hopefully, well it sure doesn't look like He will be, exalted.]

The Lord of Hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress. [closing reminder that this God of the armies of Heaven, who is also the God of individual man, is our fortress-- high place, retreat, secure height].
selah [pause and carefully consider--meditate on it].
whatever is coming,
there is both promise of tribulation and of revival,
Beloved, we are walking into destiny--not destruction.
may we see His face, and may we fear no thing,
and may we not merely survive in these last days-- but thrive.

so stockpile the Word of God in your heart-- for it will be the only thing that feeds and sustains us. and get to High Ground [our Fortress-- lead me to the Rock that is higher than I (Psalm 62:2)].

 may
"God, the source of hope, fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit" (Romans 15:13).

so awaken and watch, and eagerly anticipate..
for we long for the Day when
“the kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever.” (Revelation 11:15).

Monday, June 1, 2015

break up your fallow ground [heart-soil].

 God is for His people.
He is passionate about His Bride.

and in His mercy and unrelenting love.. He is always speaking.
drawing His lover.
pursuing His beloved.
disciplining His children.
always calling them to Himself.

and this is what He has laid on my heart to share.

it's from Hosea 10:12.

"Sow for yourselves righteousness;
reap steadfast love;

break up your fallow ground,
for it is time to seek the Lord,

that He may come and rain
righteousness upon you."


[He's calling His people to break up the fallow ground of our hearts.]

the original meaning of the term fallow ground is land that is uncultivated, un-prepared for seed, un-plowed. it is hard. and it is fruitless.
>>and in most cases, it is referring to ground that was once sown and harvested,
but now lies useless.<<

the word fallow is also synonymous with
unused,
empty,
bare,
dormant.

I was so struck by the definition of the word dormant-- and i believe this describes exactly the state of the hearts of many that call themselves by His name..

"having normal physical functions suspended or slowed down for a period of time; in or as if in a deep sleep;
alive but not actively growing;
asleep."


and I hear His heart through that definition so clearly..
the ability, the IDENTITY, the giftings, the calling..
it's there.
it.just.lies. dormant.

the fullness of who we truly are in Him,
if we're honest,
is asleep in many..
a deep sleep even.

and for some, the rockiest, hardest, [fallow] ground in our hearts-- are areas that once were the most fruitful and cultivated. the places we've seen harvest in the past.
because we've forgotten that this cultivating, this plowing, this keeping of our heart-soil so that it can receive Seed and bear fruit in our lives and this world-- is an ongoing process. a daily toil.
a moment by moment holy work.

because really, we're always sowing.
either to the Spirit or to the flesh.
we're either cultivating the soils of our heart,
or allowing them to harden, grow dry and useless.

and just as the prophet Hosea says,
what you reap is what you will sow.
it's a promise.
a principle of the Kingdom.
for good or for bad.
and so we're called to "sow righteousness" so that we may reap steadfast love.. and ultimately, so that "He may come and rain righteousness upon [us]".

there's only one other place in scripture that the phrase "break up your fallow ground" is used, and it's by Jeremiah in Jeremiah 4:3.
both places are in times of the need for national repentance,
where the Lord is almost-pleading- with His people to return,
because in His righteousness and justice-- there must be judgment.

and when we don't break up our fallow ground ourselves,
in His mercy, and I say it again, in HIS MERCY, He allows what He must,
to then break up the fallow ground of our hearts Himself.


it is His call for His people to return.
it is the only way to bring revival.

prepare the way for the Lord in your own heart today, Beloved.

let what was once dry and useless become cultivated and fruitful.

we need a harvest in our own hearts before we will ever see a harvest in our nation.

[[awaken, Church.
the time is now, to come out of your dormant state. ]]

Saturday, April 4, 2015

in the meantime. [silent saturday].

today.
the day after Good Friday.
the day before Resurrection Sunday.
that awkward day in between,,
that just kind of seems... there.

today.
"Silent Saturday".

that space of just... waiting, uncertainty, confusion, doubt, fear, anxiety
with not even a hint of something tangible to grab hold of,
or a solid rock to stand upon,
to cause us to hope.
let alone rejoice.

because all looks bleak.
and prospects rock-bottom low.
and darkness so quickly encroaches.
blinding eyes, and snuffing out the soul-light.

and so here we are. desperate.
arms flailing,
fingers reaching,
in what seems like just emptiness--air,,
trying to find something.. solid,
something we can literally wrap our fingers around, and feel.

[here we are, the doubting Thomases.]

and it's all because we so quickly forget,
just as the disciples did,
what He's already said.
the Words that He's spoke.
the promises He's made.

and honestly,
we've made hope to be this fluffy, feel good word.
when really, at it's core, hope is hard.
and without faith,
it's plain impossible.

"now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen" (hebrews 11:1)
because when we can see and feel something,
there's no need to hope for it.

faith is the solid foundation, [that ACTUALLY exists], that our hopes are placed upon.

hopes are patiently, expectantly, waited for,, because our faith creates the
proof and ability to spiritually see that which hasn't come to fruition yet.

faith allows us to see-- that which we can't physically see yet.

[[because of faith, my hope is expectation]]
and faith comes from hearing, and hearing from the Word of God. (Romans 10:17)
and so it comes full circle.

[we need His words].

to break the silence of this Saturday.
because really,
He never intended it to be that.

"And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, 'Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen.
Remember how He told you, while He was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise.'
and they remembered His words..." (Luke 24:5-8a)


and I feel the Lord saying that many are walking through a season of what seems like a perpetual Silent Saturday.
Where faith feels weak,
and hope seems lost,
to actually believe for that thing you've been asking, and seeking, and knocking and praying for.
there seems to be no fruit.
and you feel like you have nothing to hold on to.
you wonder, what's the point?
you ask, "did I even really hear from You?"
"Surely if this was Your will for me, You would have already answered by now."

but Beloved,
your prayers are not unheard.
and they are not going unanswered.
He is working in ways that you cannot physically see yet.
and He's about to break forth.

He can be trusted.
"forever, O Lord, Your Word is firmly fixed in the heavens.
Your faithfulness endures to all generations...
keep steady my steps according to Your promise..
I hope in Your words." (Psalm 119)

So Beloved,
the question is no longer will God come through,
but.. I hear Him asking,,
what will you do in the meantime?

>>what will your "saturday" look like? <<
[honor Him dear one. honor Him in this season. in this waiting. in the "silence"]
"for those who honor Me I will honor" (1 samuel 2:30)

because even our "silence" is still bursting with His words.
and we have no reason to not hope.
and we have every reason to rejoice.



"Now Thomas, one of the Twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, "We've seen the Lord." But he said to them, 'Unless I see in His hands the mark of the nails, and place my fingers into the mark of the nails, and place my hand unto His side, I will never believe.'
Eight days later, His disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, 'Peace be with you.'
Then He said to Thomas, 'Put your finger here, and see My hands; and put out your hand, and place it in My side. Do no disbelieve, but believe.'
Thomas answered Him, 'My Lord and my God!'
Jesus said to him, 'Have you believed because you have seen Me?
Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed." (John 20:24-29)




Friday, April 3, 2015

Passover,, a celebration of promise.



Passover begins at sundown.
and for the first time, it's not so foreign.
it's as up close as it can get.

 

Passover is about remembrance and fulfilled promises.
Passover is about hope, the hope that comes from a God who always comes through, who always fulfills, who never turns back on His word.

it’s about the freedom and deliverance that was promised.
the doubt and faithlessness of His children.
and the constant grace and faithfulness of God.

it’s about the covenant that He made.
and His unwillingness to break it.

it’s about the God who loves to redeem,, bring renewal and rebirth.
the Initiator of change.
faithfully changing winter into spring.


it's about the joy that He brings in the deepest of sorrows.
and the strength that He gives on the hardest of journeys.

it's about the sacrifice that He gave.
the lives that He spared.
the chains of slavery that He broke.
the new life that He promised.

Passover is about the death that was coming,,
but was overcome by the blood,
because the grace of our God is more than enough.

it's about a God who remembers,, and calls us to do the same.
and so tonight, we'll watch the sun bend low, just as the Lamb bent low to wash our feet,,
right before ultimately fulfilling the
 
promises  that God made.  and we'll remember.and we'll   celebrate.


the redemption, freedom, and life that we have.
because God didn't turn His back on His Word.
and instead gave us His Son.
the Perfect Sacrifice.
the Spotless Lamb.




[[“For all the
promises  of God find their Yes in Jesus…”]] 
                                                                                                                                    2 Corinthians 1:20

Friday, March 27, 2015

face down with walls down.

this.
because when He speaks,, it's to edify, exhort and comfort.
and we all know that sometimes that comes in the form of a word of discipline.
the perfect Father,, who corrects and disciplines out of one hundred percent pure love and tenderness. He is firm and unshakeable, and His holiness ought to cause us to tremble,
but even when He cuts to the heart, the love and comfort of Holy Spirit just draws us even closer into the arms of the Father.

so if this is for you. (like it is for me)
be encouraged.
He disciplines those whom He loves.

The need and tendency to always be strong,
is actually a weakness.


It's not what He intends for us,
and He desires to break this spirit of pride off of His Bride.

the reality of the Gospel begins and ends with utter and complete, on your face, humility.weakness. need.
both on this side of eternity when we see what we are and what we need and the hope of what He intends us to be.. and with the tax collector we cry out "God, have mercy on me, a sinner!"
and on the other side when we're bowed low,
with the only the utterance "Jesus is Lord" escaping our lips, as the echoes of Holy Holy Holy surround us on every side.

this.
this is where we find victory and strength and power.
this is where we find community, both serving and being able to served.
this is where we find identity, as completely righteous sons and daughters.
this is how we enter the Kingdom of God, and this is how we bring the Kingdom of God to earth,
[as little children],
because that's who He says it belongs to.
and this is where we find freedom.

and for some this may be easy..
to bow down low before your Maker.
recognize your need.
but when it comes to taking down those walls with the flesh and blood body of Christ that sits next to us, it's a whole different story. 


because if you're like me,
you want to focus only on the areas of growth.
the areas where you excel.
the ways you've been completely transformed.
and would rather just avoid the places of current toil and struggle and battle.
but it's in this place of humility,
bringing our weakness to the table,  not only our strengths,
that we're going to find true unity.
because we'll finally see each member and each gifting as truly necessary,
on a corporate and individual level.
i'll see that i need you, and you'll see that you need me to fully advance the Kingdom,
both in our own lives and the lives of those around us.

so allow Him to break off the pride.
and break down the walls.

so He can be strong and seen and glorified
through our weakness and our need.




[just to clarify.. please don't hear what i'm not saying.. this is not a call to a false humility Christianity, with the "woe is me, i'm just a sinner and will always be a sinner mentality".. it's actually the opposite. if you've been redeemed, you're just that. completely new, set free and totally righteous in His sight, with all the grace you need to obey His commands and fulfill the destiny He has for you. and that's exactly what you need and what causes you to overcome-- His grace!

and obviously, when it comes to sharing specific areas of weakness.. use discernment.pray about what to share, when to share and with whom to share. ]


Tuesday, March 24, 2015

begin.

There's a pressing on my heart to share what I feel like He's speaking to me, and desiring to speak to someone else, today.


"you have to start some where.
beloved, do not be discouraged or deterred because you have not yet attained that which is on your heart, that which you aspire to.

>>your goal, your vision, your hope
should not be a source of condemnation<<.
[that's what the enemy tries to twist it into].

rather, let it be your driving force in keeping your eyes on Him as you begin. and as you continue.

it's foolish to not begin because you think you should be or you desire to be further down the road.

you have to start some where.

one foot in front of the other.


there is no stagnation in Christianity.
the soul is always in motion.
and the enemy is constantly stealing.

if we're not taking ground,
we're losing it.
if we're not moving forward,
we're moving backwards.
so now is the time, beloved.
He is glorified in your weakness.
and He is propelled by your hunger.

"do not despise these small beginnings" [zechariah 4:10],
for the Lord is so pleased. "

Sunday, February 22, 2015

fan the flame. do not grow dim.




Sunday.
The end of the week.  A week that I’m almost having trouble wrapping my head and heart around.
and I feel like I can finally pause. And take a breath.
try to process. Try to decompress.
to rest.
and just shut out the news.
and quiet the chaos that surrounds and increases.
to just take a moment.
a moment of somber silence.
for the blood of the 21 poured out on that beach,,
because they refused to renounce the One whose blood was poured out for them first.
and I can’t help but tremble within as I read of their heartfelt songs of worship that left their lips as they loved not their lives unto death. And it’s in the bleakness of their death that we see what it truly means to overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony.
and their testimony speaks a thousand words, a ripple across the nations. 
the call of Isaiah 60.

Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD has risen upon you.
For behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the LORD will arise upon you, and his glory will be seen upon you.
And nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.
Lift up your eyes all around, and see; they all gather together, they come to you; your sons shall come from afar, and your daughters shall be carried on the hip.
Then you shall see and be radiant; your heart shall thrill and exult, because the abundance of the sea shall be turned to you, the wealth of the nations shall come to you.

it’s time to arise.
to shine in these days.
when the beheading of the 21 is called a “message signed with blood to the nation of the Cross”.
when one of American’s so-called most popular and influential pastors calls the very Word of God irrelevant.
when darkness and confusion seems to overwhelm the Light and Truth.
this is when we need to shine, Church.

and yet,
so many lamps are flickering.
so many lights growing dim.
barely there.


and it’s as I read the words of those very “letters from 2000 years ago” that are being claimed as “irrelevant”,
that I’m reminded that He already said that all of this would happen.
the very days we’re living in.
the very week we just had.
is all laid out in Matthew 24.

[[“As Jesus was leaving the Temple grounds, his disciples pointed out to him the various Temple buildings. But he responded, “Do you see all these buildings? I tell you the truth, they will be completely demolished. Not one stone will be left on top of another!”
Later, Jesus sat on the Mount of Olives. His disciples came to him privately and said, “Tell us, when will all this happen? What sign will signal your return and the end of the world?
Jesus told them, “Don’t let anyone mislead you, for many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah.’ They will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and threats of wars, but don’t panic. Yes, these things must take place, but the end won’t follow immediately. Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world. But all this is only the first of the birth pains, with more to come.
“Then you will be arrested, persecuted, and killed. You will be hated all over the world because you are my followers. And many will turn away from me and betray and hate each other. And many false prophets will appear and will deceive many people. Sin will be rampant everywhere, and the love of many will grow cold.
 >>But the one who endures to the end will be saved<<. And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come.”]]


and so I’m comforted.
and I’m exhorted.

[to not let my love, or the love of any in my reach, to grow cold.
to not let my light, or the light of any around me, to grow dim.
but to burn.
to burn with such passionate, radiant heat
that it melts the icy hearts around me.]

because we’re called to shine.
and the hour is quickly coming when our lamps must be trimmed and ready. Full of oil.

and I hear the Bridegroom calling out,

[Stir up your affection.
stir up your passion.
now is not the time to grow dim.
now is not the time to wax cold.
stir it up.
and the wind of my Spirit will blow.
and fan the flame within you.

because you have all of My affection.
and I am deeply passionate about you.

My eye has never left you.
My gaze is set.

Even if your light is just a flicker,
My love has never changed.
there is no condemnation.
there is no shame.
My anger is far from you.

for a bruised reed I will not break,
and
a faintly burning wick I will not quench.]


so
arise, Church.
and
shine.

because when the enemy thinks he’s snuffed out 21 torches,,
he’s really just fanned the flame of the Church,
and set a match to the nations.





 




Friday, January 30, 2015

writings of these pilgrim days. [prepare].

the nations rage.
the people plot in vain.
the kings and rulers of this world set themselves against the Lord and His Anointed [[Jesus]].
Seeking to remove Him from their midst completely.

[Psalm 2]'s perfect description of the crisis of our day.


and so,
these words.
given to me on December 13th.
i don't say them lightly. they have intense weight in my heart and in this season.
and so i share out of obedience. out of burning love. out of a hunger for righteousness and a desire for His glory-- in my life and in yours.


Beloved,,
[[it's time to prepare]].
purging.
priorities.
pursuit.

what are you going after?
what are you running towards?

I AM beckoning you.
come close.
draw near
.

[[there is a shaking coming]].

be awake. be firm.

a rumbling from the mountains.

>>know where your strength lies<<




and so,
i ask you to do what He's asked me to do..
>>prayerfully seek how He would have you prepare for the season that's ahead and the days that we're walking into<<.
the cry of His heart in this hour is to [draw near]. we NEED to know His voice in this hour like never before.


We were made for such a time as this.
let us walk in destiny.
and as the writer of Hebrews encourages us,
[[let us be grateful for receiving a Kingdom that cannot be shaken,
and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.]]
For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come.