Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Kingdom Of God Is Within You!

The kingdom of God is not in the black and white print of a book called the Bible. It’s not in the church programs or in the buildings. It’s not what you do…although many people do wonderful things in the name of the Lord. Jesus said the kingdom is not in meat or drink. It's not in this far off unattainable place up in the sky, either. So where is it?

The kingdom of God is within you, according to Luke 17:21. Think about that for a moment. Well, think about that until you get the revelation! The King doesn’t go anywhere without His kingdom. As a matter of fact, He brings it all with him! How amazing is it that Jesus thought to put it inside of each person that received Him as Savior?

God has said that His word will not return to Him void but it shall surely accomplish what He pleases and it will prosper in the thing for which it is sent, (Isaiah 55:11). When we “send” the word back to Him through our prayers and declaration of it, it has such a short distance to travel to get back to Him. We’re really just declaring it until we get the revelation that releases the breakthrough of faith. We don’t declare it for God’s sake, but for ours. The Word of God is Jesus. (John 1:1) Jesus also said in John 15 that if we would abide in Him and His words abide in us, we could ask whatever we desire and it would be done for us. (vs.7) The WORD is in us. The Kingdom of God is within you. The Kingdom is released through faith and obedience. The more we remain in faith and obedience, and demonstrate love and compassion towards others, the Kingdom inside of us grows. It expands like yeast permeating a lump of dough. It will literally overtake every part of us! Jesus so wanted people to “get” the concept of the Kingdom being inside of us, that is why He told His disciples to go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel, and as they went they were to proclaim ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ He told the disciples, "Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.” The King and His kingdom are as close as your hand. What he was saying is, “Check it out guys! The Kingdom is so close you don't have to go anywhere to find it. You’re standing right in the middle of it!” "Now, go - give it away!" What a revelation, right? The Kingdom is actually closer than your hand. It’s within you. He demonstrated the Kingdom so that they wouldn't forget what He was teaching them.

Now that is truly an amazing thought, once you wrap your mind around it. The Kingdom of God and everything you need is so close, it’s right there inside of you. You just need to learn how to tap into it with your faith. Are you getting this yet?

What exists in heaven? Is there sickness? Is there disease? Nope. Is there poverty? Is there death? What?? Isn't heaven full of dead people? No, no no... they are very much alive! Jesus said God was not the god of the dead but of the living. So there is only life in Him, right? Can Jesus be anything BUT life? No! Read John 1:4. In Him we find wholeness, peace, and health. Jesus gave each person His Holy Spirit and as we accept Jesus as our Savior, Holy Spirit came to take up residence within us. If you doubt that fact, simply invite Him to come inhabit you and fill you with all His fullness - right now! Isn’t He, in fact, resurrection power? In Ephesians 18-19 the Apostle Paul prayed that we would be able to comprehend the depth of God’s love. It so surpasses understanding and our knowledge! Paul understood the Kingdom with incredible depth. That is why when he got bit by a poisonous asp (see Acts 28:5) he simply shook it off and suffered no ill effects. You see, when you get the revelation of “the Kingdom of God within you,” the fullness is released. More anointing is released because your faith grows through revelation. Anything with death attached to it had to surrender to the power of the anointing. Paul understood this. Nothing is greater than the God that lives inside of us. The scripture gives us good news. We have the victory! We’ve overcome, because greater is He that is within you, than he that is in the world. (1 John 4:4).

But the flip side of this truth is that faith must be exercised in order to grow. One cannot develop faith in the middle of a crisis. That is called hope, and hope and faith are not the same. Faith is a confident assurance towards God. Faith knows. The enemy will do everything possible to wear people down and convince them through their circumstances that he is greater. Death, illness, poverty are greater. No, friend. The KING and His Kingdom are greater. Always. The devil may present you with facts, but facts are not always truth. There may always be those times when circumstances defy our understanding, and there will be times when we simply don't understand God's plan or His will for different individuals - but we should never stop believing. Jesus came to give us life and life more abundantly. He came to have us live in the reality of His Kingdom. It was so important to the plan of God for each of our lives, Jesus was willing to die so that we would have access to it all!

Whatever your need, all you have to do is envision the Kingdom living within you. The help you require is so close, you can’t even extract yourself out of the kingdom. What a cool plan, huh? Jesus wanted to remain as close as possible to us so that we wouldn’t get lost. We couldn’t be without help in the time of our need. Seriously. Read Romans 8:31-39. He has already given us Himself through death and resurrection. What else would He not be willing to give? Our only failure is to not understand His love, His gracious Spirit, His kindness and His mercy. You didn't know you've been forgiven? You have, on the cross - even before you asked for it! You don't have to feel angry, rejected or forgotten. You don't have to feel unwanted. You don't have to worry about where the answer is going to come from. God wants you to know He understands, and it's going to be ok. If you've had a response of unbelief, just ask Him to forgive you; receive His love and grace. Everything you need is contained in Jesus Christ. He loves you so very much He left His Spirit with us so that we all could experience His Spirit living within us. Oh, how marvelous is His love!! You are not waiting for help to arrive, it is here! I ask my daughter all the time (reviewing spelling words) “What is the difference between ‘here’ and ‘there?’ One letter. “t”. Funny how it takes the shape of the cross. The cross is the bridge between ‘here’ (where you’re at this moment) and ‘there’ - (where you need to get to, or where the answer is). Just close your eyes and go across the bridge of faith, get your provision out of the kingdom, and come back with it in your hand. Tap into it with your faith. See yourself doing it!

 I think Jesus wants you to ask again, and this time, don’t doubt. Jesus said, “Have faith in God. For assuredly I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them and you will have them.” (Mark 11:22-24).

Thursday, April 19, 2012

What Do You See?

What you see in others could be what hinders your ability to receive from God. Do you see through eyes of familiarity, or eyes of faith? In John chapter 2 the wine ran out at the wedding of Cana, which Jesus was attending. His mother, Mary, approached Jesus with a request. “On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Now both Jesus and His disciples were invited to the wedding. And when they ran out of wine, the mother of Jesus said to Him, “They have no wine.”

Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does your concern have to do with Me? My hour has not yet come.” (John 2:4). His mother said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.”

It would seem that either Jesus did not know His time for ministry had arrived, or perhaps the question He posed to his mother was a test. Although Mary knew many years earlier that she had given birth to the Son of God, it could have very easy for her to only see Jesus as her son. By this time Jesus was a grown man. Many years of mothering could have dulled her faith and caused Mary to ignore the anointing that had been hidden in Jesus' life. We must remember that even in the life of the Son of God, there was a set time for him to enter the ministry phase of his life. Mary had to make a choice to stop seeing Jesus only as family and start seeing Him as the anointed one. It was a choice she made by faith. Now, consider the fact that up to this time Jesus had not worked any miracles. So for her to come and press Jesus to produce a miracle wasn't something she had seen him do before. It was faith that caused her to reason within herself that because He was the Son of God there had to be power available to change the situation at hand. Once she determined that anything was possible, she wasn’t going to be deterred. It was Mary’s faith that pressed on the anointing and caused power to be released.

Mary chose to honor the presence of the Holy Spirit in Jesus’ life and the result produced a miracle - not for herself, but for others at the wedding. Amazing!

The presence of the Holy Spirit in a person’s life fills them up like liquid fills a cup. When a person places a demand on the anointing, that “need” presses down like a weight being pushed down into that cup. It’s like dropping pebbles into a glass of water and watching the water level rise. This same principle causes the anointing to overflow. The need increases the level of anointing until it flows out of the vessel and onto the person that touches the cup. Think about it…At the wedding of Cana when did the water change to wine? In other words, when did the supernatural change occur? When faith and obedience presented itself to the Master. Understand that the “Master’s hand” is upon His servants. When you press in to touch Him (coming by faith with your need), you are drawing close to Him, and He will likewise draw near to meet you. The anointing in the life of a man or woman of God is there. It is enough to change the situation at hand in your life, but how you see others could be the very thing that determines your ability to receive what you need out of the anointing. Perhaps, like Mary, up to now you have not been able to see the anointing at work. Perhaps you have said, "Ah, but they are just my friend, that person is just my gardener, my accountant, my uncle, my spouse, ect. That may be true, but do they have the presence of God within them? Are they full of the Holy Spirit? Greater is He that lives within us than he that is in the world.

How easy it can be to discount a promise God wants us to have when the declaration of that promise comes from someone familiar. Familiarity often breeds contempt though, even if we don't realize that is the way we are treating the presence of the Holy Spirit. Recently the Lord reminded me of a promise that had been spoken to me, but because it didn't come to pass when I thought it would, I lost hope and began to come up with reasons why it hadn't been fulfilled. The same word had also been given to me by another person that was close to me, but the very nature of the promise was almost too good to be true so I thought maybe it came out of the human heart rather than from God. Again, when it didn't come to pass right away I started to explain away the reasons why BUT I came into agreement with unbelief rather than faith. Unbelief won't produce the promise! God showed me that I was like Sarah, who laughed when she heard what God was going to do for her and Abraham. It was too good to be true, or so she thought. It was so far beyond what she could imagine, she laughed! Isn't that just like God to blow our mind by giving us a desire of our heart that is so deeply personal, so unexpected, that we disbelieve it could actually happen? Sometimes we see the impossibility of a situation and think it is too big for God to do something about. But if God is crazy enough to say it, can we be crazy enough to just believe, "Wow, He's going to do it?" With every prophetic promise, it will enter a season of contradiction. Every promise has to fall into a dormant season before it will come to pass. With the promise comes restrictions. The promise goes into captivity and we have to CHOOSE TO BELIEVE in spite of what it looks like in the natural. When it comes time for the promise to be fulfilled, God will encourage us to believe again. He will cause us to wrestle against whatever those restrictions are that have come against our promise.

Every impossible situation is simply there so we will believe.

Every impossible situation is simply a set up so that we can receive! Come on now, God wants you to get a new set of eyes so you can see in the Spirit with eyes of faith. Faith agrees with God. Faith dreams with God and lets our heart really believe the dream, the deep desire of your heart is going to come to pass!

That is why we have to actively seek those that have strong faith and will pray a prayer of agreement for that promise to come to pass. And, if we have been like Sarah, who laughed, then we need to understand that God loves to delight us and bless us in ways we can't hardly imagine. But if we have treated the promise, or the person who gave us the promise with contempt, we really do need to ask God to forgive us for disregarding the Holy Spirit. It's really Him who gives the promise, after all. It's when we resolve the issues that have hindered the promise from coming to pass that faith will rise to the top and believe. We need to seek out the servants of the Lord and be like Jacob, who wrestled with God and declared, "I won't let you go until you bless me!" This is the type of insistent urgency that Mary put on Jesus at the wedding of Cana. She wouldn't take no for an answer. Her insistency pressed into the anointing and pulled out a miracle. Mary was just a woman. If she could press the anointing and get what she needed, so can you.

Let me ask you, "How do you want others to see you?" "Do you want them to see the Jesus in you? Do you want others to put a demand on the anointing in your life so that power and anointing flow out of you?" Faith sees with the heart, not the intellect or the natural mindset. Faith does not measure a person by what they know of them; faith is led by the Holy Spirit to act upon the guidance and conviction of the Holy Spirit - regardless of what the natural mind may argue. Faith acts; faith moves forward to seek the Jesus in the human vessels God has placed around us. God does not leave us without the remedy or the ability to find the answer we need. Look around. It is there in plain sight - you just need eyes to see where your answer lies. What you want to see has everything to do with whether or not you respond in genuine faith. You can choose to see others through the eyes of familiarity and discount them in your estimation; or you can choose to see them as an anointed servant of the Lord. When you determine that because they have the Holy Spirit in their life, there must be power to change the situation at hand, your faith will release the power of God and virtue will flow. Without faith it is impossible to please God. Without faith, it is impossible to receive from the anointing. Today could be the day you open your eyes to see people in a new light. Sometimes,  miracles are waiting to happen and they're standing right in front of us. God is just waiting for us to ask for new eyes to see others as He sees them. Wouldn't we be surprised! I think our faith would increase substantially and miracles would be commonplace. If only we had eyes to see.


Father, forgive me for seeing others in my life as so familiar that I discount the anointing in their life. Truly, where You dwell, there is power. Forgive me for treating Your presence in the lives of others as common. Holy Spirit, please forgive me if I have shown You disrespect. Lord, I know You have placed certain people in my life that are full of the Holy Spirit. Let me see them through new eyes. Help me recognize the anointing in the lives of others. Give me faith to press in and receive the answer to my need. In Jesus name, Amen.

Monday, April 16, 2012

You Are The Dream Of God

Did you know that God has put a dream inside of each and every one of us? He has a dream specially created just for your life! We know according to Genesis 1:26 that God had a conversation with Himself and said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to our likeness…" and when God created woman in Genesis 2:21 He said, "And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept, and He took one of his ribs and closed up the flesh in it's place. Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, an He brought her to the man. And Adam said, "This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called WOMAN, because she was taken out of man."

So WOMAN came from man, but she's made in the image of GOD. That's quite an interesting concept, isn't it? Woman is distinctly female, yet has inseparable qualities of both MAN AND GOD within her. THINK ABOUT THAT FOR A MOMENT! Wow, we are soooo fearfully and wonderfully made. Can you just get inside the mind of God for a moment when He was dreaming about creating woman – what an absolute genius mind God has… man is wonderful, and man is made in the image of God too, but we are truly made with both male and female qualities – quite unique. We are the female counterpart to the Godhead because we mirror – or we're supposed to mirror all the qualities of Holy Spirit. Gentle, kind, loving, tender, yet absolutely the voice of authority in our sphere of influence. And ever since woman was created, God has been trying to get woman to let the man out of her. When I say "man," I'm referring to the voice of male authority that is found in Christ. It's the GOD-MAN in us.

God wants to see us live the reality of His word that says we are made in HIS IMAGE AND LIKENESS. That means we need to look like God. We need to sound like God. When we speak, the devil shouldn't be able to tell the difference between us or Jesus when we're walking in the dominion, the power, the authority, and the confidence of knowing who we were made to be. Holy Spirit is the one that creates, He is the one who impregnates and conceives the dream of God. He is the very womb of God. He is the one that gives birth. He hovers over those He loves like a mother hen; He is the one that comforts, encourages, lifts up and nurtures those He loves. Do you see how you, dear woman, are made in the image of God?

You are Mary – who was impregnated with the dream of God. You are Hannah, that travailed to see the birth of the promise. You are Ruth, who knew the importance of devoted loyalty even in the face of personal sacrifice. You are Tamar and Rachel, that wrestled with God and others, not dissuaded by circumstances but spurred on by injustice, that brings forth a promise named Breakthrough and generations of great fruitfulness. You are Deborah, that wars for the justice of God and compels others to rise up and do what's right – to fight the good fight of faith. And you are Esther…a woman who has come into the Kingdom of God for such a time of this. A woman who will lay down her life to confront the enemy and decree life to those that have been targeted for the enemy's destruction. A woman that knows what it means to wear the robes of royalty with gratitude, confidence and humility, and to know what it is to be an extension of the King's scepter of authority. Every woman that I mentioned is a different picture of who God is, and what the CHRIST in US yearns to do. So ladies, let Him out. This is who you really are!


Don't be afraid to dream big, to be a woman of influence. God has spoken words of destiny over you and He wants His dream for you to come to pass! Do you believe that? Do you know He's had conversations about you in heaven that you know nothing about? He's spoken to the Godhead; He's spoken to the angels. He has words of destiny that are waiting to be fulfilled!

But some of us need divine surgery on our hearts in order to see that happen. You see, sometimes we have a filter on our ears, and it affects how we hear. Sometimes we have a filter on what we see, and it affects our perception. If you have unresolved offense or unforgiveness, everything is affected because of the filter. If you've got insecurities or fears, you've got a filter. And the enemy uses those filters – whatever they are – to manipulate your hearing so that he can manipulate your belief system. When he manipulates your belief system, it transfers over to your actions. It has a ripple effect. It's not just good that gets passed on, offense gets passed on, too. That's why the Bible warns us to beware of anyone that has a root of bitterness, lest it defile the hearts of those affected by those that are offended. Offense poisons others and multiplies greatly. The Bible admonishes us to be "wise women," and compares the wise woman to the foolish woman in Prov. 14:1. The foolish woman tears down her house through negative speech and unloving actions. We want to be the wise woman that heals through love. A wise woman promotes wholeness and health in her family with sound speech, love and wisdom of God. Let me encourage you today to examine your own heart for places where you need the Lord's healing. There may be areas where you think you're ok, but if you haven't really forgiven someone that offended you, if you haven't renounced that "filter" or dealt with the root of your issues, the enemy has an open door to continue to spin his web of lies. That's how he keeps that blind spot there, 'cause that's where he has a hook in you. And, that blind spot may seem like not that big of a deal to you, but it might be enough to keep you from your next door of opportunity, or walking into your inheritance as a child of God. We may not even know it's there, but GOD knows when we're got a blind spot and it's affecting us in some way. Do you know why they call them blind spots? Because YOU can't see them. YOU ARE BLIND TO YOUR BLIND SPOTS. You have to trust HOLY SPIRIT to do the assessment for you.

Our assessment of where we are at spiritually or emotionally, or even our assessment of our own maturity level is absolutely irrelevant. It means nothing, because our own opinions and the way we judge ourselves is not equal to God's standard of holiness or purity. We will automatically judge ourselves to be in a higher state of maturity or spirituality than what we really are. God's word is our standard, not our biased assessment of ourselves or others, and not our personal opinions. Sometimes there are things that are too painful to admit. Things that we're too ashamed to confess to ourselves, much less to God. Listen, I know what it's like to have such shame you can't even hardly face yourself, much less confess it to another human being. I've been the drunk and the drug addict. I've been the person who couldn't keep a job, or the mom who risked having her kid taken away. I've been the adulterous woman looking for love in all the wrong place. I know what it feels like to lose everything and have to start over – sometimes from my own sin, and other times because I simply said yes to God. I know what it's like when everyone abandons you, and you're standing by yourself on the curb, wondering where God is in your life. I know what it's like to hate God and shake my fist and say, "HOW CAN I TRUST YOU?" when all my dreams were shattered and lying in pieces. And I know the shame of it all when the devil tells your story in such a way so that what others see is the worst possible picture. Please know that what you've done is not who you are.  Never forget that you are made in the image of God. You are a child of God. The redeemed, His bride. You are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. You are destiny. Royalty. Never let the devil or anyone else tell you otherwise!

God wants to go deep. We can't expect to go into our future carrying around all our baggage from the past. You can't restore others until you are restored. Women are life givers. They are by nature, restorers. If you have become anything less, then you are denying the very person you were created to be! I want you to think about the attributes of the Holy Spirit that I described. Life-giver, nurturer, comforter, encourager, protector, mediator, peace maker and so much more. Women are the key to families being healed, which is why the enemy has tried so very hard to destroy them and keep them from entering into their destiny. Women are the key to healing their children and their children's destinies, because if a woman is walking in peace, joy and the love of the Lord – everybody around her is going to get a touch. You have the ability to turn your husband in a new direction, and with it, turn the destiny of your entire family and generations to come – in a new direction, but you can't do it by force or manipulation. YOU WERE CREATED TO INFLUENCE, but God wants your influence to come from Him the way He created you to be, not the ways the enemy wants to manipulate our behavior. If you want to be even more of a life giver than what you already are, then you have to start walking in an even greater anointing.

The first step is walk in the reality of who God created you to be – and not the identity the enemy has tried to put on you. He has done everything possible to conform people to some twisted, misunderstood, rejected piece of work and signed his name to his handiwork, but TODAY is the day when the tables turn and you can get the upper hand over the enemy.There is a quote from a little book called the Prayer of Jabez that has stuck with me. The author was giving this illustration of a great man of God and wondered what made him so different from other men. Then he walked down the hall and overheard this man praying. He said, "Ahhh…Now I know. Great men pray different." I'm telling you, to reach a place of influence…to see the power of God move the mountains and be big in your life, you have to get to a place where you pray different. You have to have ears to hear and CATCH certain phrases, certain key words, and you capture them and take them into your own prayers. You don't just read an article and walk away, you glean from everything you can get and take it into prayer. You don't just hear a message and leave thinking, wow, that was a great message. You have a personal responsibility every time you hear an anointed word. Your life becomes the message. We are living epistles read of all men. Our lives become the prophetic message to those around us –what sign are you wearing? What do others read out of your life? The Holy Spirit inside of the believer is a healer, a reconciler, a restorer. He is the one who encourages us to forgive, be gracious, be victorious. The God inside of us always, always seeks to encourage, lift people up, and NUDGE us, even PUSH us towards mending relationships, loving and forgiving everyone, all the time. 70x7 is what Jesus told Peter. We can't just talk about God. The question is, "CAN OTHERS SEE CHRIST IN YOU?" Remember, woman of God, YOU ARE MADE IN HIS IMAGE. God wants us to wear a sign that makes others stop and ask us for directions.

The Bible tells us to overcome evil with good and that love never fails. Sometimes the greatest test of your integrity is the test of loving others in the midst of offense. When you pray out of a pure motive - a heart moved by compassion and selfless, sacrificial love - This is true greatness, and this is the GOD that lives inside us. This is what He wants to create in us; the capacity to LOVE GREATLY – but until he empties us of ourselves, we cannot be filled. He wants to take the filters off. The ones that the enemy uses to make our love grow cold. The ones the enemy uses to distort what we think we're hearing or perceiving. God wants to rip the veil off the blind spots and give you clarity, He wants to deal with our uncleannesses and restore us. He wants to take every deficiency and fill it with power, authority and anointing to take back our families and our inheritance. No way can the devil have my family! No way can he have my husband! No way can he have my health, my finances, my future, or any promise God has said belongs to me. It's time to put our foot down on the devil's head and take it all back. It's time for recovery! It's time for every daughter of Eve to walk into her rightful inheritance and fulfill her destiny. You are a beautiful, incredible woman of destiny and God is calling you up and out of the ashes of your yesterdays. Put on the robes of royalty. Dare to believe, because God is restoring HIS DREAM IN YOU!


I thank You that I am made in the image and likeness of God. I thank You that You put your greatness inside of me! Lord, I renounce all bitterness, unforgiveness and offense. I do not want them to hinder my future. I choose to forgive (Name those people you need to forgive) and I ask that You bless them in any way You see fit. Bless their families with healing. Bless them with health. Bless their finances. Help me to release them to you. Lord, if I have any blind spots, show them to me so that the enemy cannot exploit them. I give You permission, Holy Spirit, in advance of any situation that may arise - that You have permission to change my responses so that they honor You. I submit myself to You, Lord Jesus, and your Holy Spirit. You may change my heart, change my words and responses, so that the enemy cannot receive any glory. I thank You for helping me be an agent of healing and reconciliation. Fill me with Your love, grace and mercy so that it can be used for the good of healing others and leading them to You. In Jesus name, amen.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Pick Up Your Promise!

Corrie Ten Boom has a great quote that says, "When a train goes through a tunnel and it gets dark, you don't throw away the ticket and jump off. You sit still and trust the engineer." There can be many dark times in our lives when things don’t make sense and we lose all sense of where we're going. We just have to hold on until we get into the light again.

It can be like this with prophetic words or dreams, too. Sometimes we misunderstand or misinterpret prophetic words or pictures because we try to interpret them without all the pieces of the puzzle. Sometimes God gives us a prophetic word or a dream because He wants to communicate about an important issue in the present moment. But not every word is like that. Prophecy can involve a long time between what has been spoken from the heart of God and the actual fulfillment of that word. When a genuine prophetic word comes forth from God it seems like all the power of hell rages against it to keep it from coming to pass. The mistake that many people make when trying to interpret prophecy or dreams is assuming God is talking about the same situation that we are. Never assume. It's too easy to miss what God wants to do if you think it has to somehow fit into the only piece of your life that you can see, which is your present reality. Ask Him questions, accept in faith what you might not understand right now, and pray about it. If it's truly Him, He always confirms His word. He will continue to breath on that promise.

Some words never come to pass because they are not truly from God, or the person that it was intended for might not have taken it seriously enough to do their part in seeing that it would come to pass. Our part is to prepare our heart, character and the rest of our life to be ready for that word when it's time for it to come to pass. Prophetic words often require some time to reach their fulfillment as God makes everything ready. The mistake people often make is trying to interpret certain prophetic word by their current events, or perhaps  things that are on their heart at the time they hear a prophecy. That can be a big mistake! 

Some of you reading this article have felt let down and disillusioned because the word you were hoping would come to pass never did. Perhaps it is still for an appointed time or perhaps you misunderstood what God was trying to say. Go back and take an objective look at what was said, or perhaps a promise He gave you, even if it was years ago. God’s heart towards the promise doesn’t change if it’s a part of your destiny. You just have repent for breaking faith with Him and believe again. Pick up your promise, child of God! Believe again!

The battles can be weary, life can be frustrating at times and there is a season where every promise must die before it can live again in the heart of the person that received it. This is the reality of prophetic promises. The promise as it looks in God’s heart is often different than our own perception, and everything that is of our flesh must die so that when it’s birthed the promise doesn’t look like us. If God is really the father of whatever is birthed, it will absolutely look like Him, not us. It will come forth supernaturally, not by our strength. God will not birth an Ishmael! He births the promise. He will wait until we surrender every part of trying to make something happen in our own strength. He will wait until we are convinced we cannot make something happen that He has not willed. He does this so that when the time for the birth does come there is no confusion who the father is. We go through valleys and yes it is dark and discouraging in the valleys, but if you keep holding on I promise you God will be faithful to see you through. His word will never fail you. The promise isn’t dead but the enemy will try to convince you that it is. If you could see your promise like a little baby, you would know that it is still very much alive in heaven! Now all you need to do is allow yourself to re-live those moments when you received prophetic words and remind God what He said. Remind God of every promise you’ve believed would come to pass!

In Jeremiah chapter one, God asked His servant Jeremiah what he saw. When Jeremiah told the Lord what he saw, God responded by saying, “You  have seen well! I am ready to perform My word!” (Jer. 1:11-12).  God waits until the timing is right and then encourages us to believe again. He gives us little clues in fresh dreams, scripture or reminding us of His prophetic words that were once spoken over our lives. He wants us to look for the signs that He is communicating about something important! Once again, He wants to know if we will agree with what has been spoken in heaven. Will we see with the eye of faith and see what HE sees? When we do, we can enter into agreement with Him and call those things that are not as though they were already here. (read Romans 4:20,21) We speak life into those things that exist in heaven, pulling them down into our present reality with our faith. You truly enter the timing of the Lord where it won’t be delayed any longer and the promise is about to come to pass! Jesus said in Mark 11:22-24, “Have faith in God. For assuredly I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them and you will have them.”

Lord Jesus, I believe, help my unbelief! Forgive me for letting go of the promise and looking at the contradiction of my circumstances as truth. This day, I ask You to remind me of the prophetic words and promises that were truly from You. Let every false word be broken now in Jesus name, that it might not cause confusion. I ask You to release clarity, Holy Spirit. I do believe, and today I break every agreement with the enemy. This day, I pick up my promise and speak life into it. Let the breath of God birth the prophetic word You gave me. Father, You say in Your word that when I can see what You see, it is a sign that You are ready to perform Your word. I pray, let there be no more delay, but hasten Your word to perform it. Let this be the day of salvation. Let this be the day that You do that “new thing” you have spoken about. I ask You to break the power of negative words so that Your promise will prosper and come to pass. I break the power of death over what You have spoken into my life. I choose this day to agree with what has been spoken in heaven. I pull my promise down from the invisible realm of faith and tell it to manifest now in this earthly realm. Let every mountain of resistance be cast into the sea. I believe that the promise still lives in Your heart and it shall surely come to pass. In Jesus name, amen.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Ripple Effect

You might not think too much about a simple act of kindness, but what seems small to you might mean the world to someone else. Never underestimate the power of God to increase the impact of your gesture of love, a prayer, or an act of kindness. The person you might think is the least likely one to remember you, could be just the person God uses to return a favor or a blessing.

We all wear a sign. We constantly communicate a message to others. We are living epistles and others "read our sign" everyday.

The question is, “What do you want others to understand about you?”

Perhaps the question should be, “What kind of mark do you want to leave on humanity?”

An interesting thing about God is, He watches everything. He looks for those that will be kind and demonstrate selflessness. He looks for those that genuinely want to love others and not expect a payback.

Life can be all about us, or a life spent on others.

Every action has a ripple effect. Every act, whether it’s an act of love and generosity or an act of indifference, goes on to touch someone else. For instance, perhaps you are having a bad day and out of your own frustration you end up taking it out on some undeserving person that just happens to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. What you unleash on that unsuspecting person just might end up being multiplied and passed on to the next person that “gets in the way.” By the same token, if you sow an act of kindness, generosity, love or extend your faith in some way towards someone else, that too will trigger responses that are passed on to others. Everything gets multiplied. Another thing to remember is the fact that we’re all connected. We might not be able to see the bigger picture at times but we are all connected by God’s divine ingenuity. He keeps this universe and all the world’s population moving along right on schedule. There are things that no one can explain, like being in the right place at the right time to rescue a child from danger, or pulling a person out of a car wreck just before a car explodes. There are the smaller moments too, that rarely get noticed unless one is looking for God’s hand at work. It doesn’t have to be dramatic for it to be a God-moment. It might be the person that gave you a kind reference and it made all the difference in you getting that new job. Christian or non-Christian alike, everyone has those testimonies of someone else that did something for us that changed a situation in our life and it happened at just the right moment. We realize too, that those “random” events that seem accidental or what some might call fate are really God pulling the strings in our life a little bit tighter. See, we’re all a part of the net that He casts into the sea of humanity. He has precision timing to make sure that someone grabs the net and pulls on it just in time to make things happen for someone else on the net. You never just might be next. Aren't you grateful God is watching out for you?

Father God,

I thank You for all the people that You have put in my life when I never stopped to think about it. Thank You for all the people You have used to bless me, show kindness to me, and even rescue me when I might not have realized I needed to be rescued. Lord, You are always watching out for me! Help me to have eyes to see those You want me to connect with. Pull those strings in my life and draw my destiny connections closer. Help me to hear You clearly so that I know what You want me to do for others. Thank You, Father, that Your family is all around me. You have placed people strategically around me, and I am placed in their path for a strategic reason as well. Holy Spirit, I ask You to prompt me to take whatever action will trigger a ripple effect, creating momentum and releasing Your kingdom in this earth. Breathe on those things I pray, O God, that Your Spirit would pick up that one little action and carry it forward. Let the effects of kindness, generosity, love and blessing be multiplied, creating an ever expanding influence in this earthly realm. Reveal Your plan I pray, for myself as well as to others, and let all Your will and purpose be accomplished. In Jesus name, Amen.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Lessons From A Hairdresser

I had the pleasure of finding a new work out partner who just happens to be a hairdresser. Exercising with a friend can be so much more enjoyable than trying to go it alone, but the interesting thing is how God can bring a fresh message out of an hour of just “chatting.”

As we talked, my new friend explained how she doesn’t “just do hair,” but that her client visits are meaningful and therapeutic as well. “If I’m not solving someone else’s problems, they’re solving mine,” she explained. “I remember a time when I did this woman’s hair and she was a pastor’s wife. I don’t know exactly what was drawn out of me, but my life changed that day and I’ll never forget it.”

I think the Lord wanted me to remind you today that His people and His counselors are everywhere. Divine encounters are just waiting to happen! He loves to bring people into moments where simple conversations release change and dynamically enhance a person’s life. Because, you see, hairdressers understand a key principle that the world needs to get. People are always communicating a message. Some messages are to others and some are to God, but human beings want to be heard. They long to be known. They long to be seen. They fight against feeling invisible. Mostly though, when people communicate a message, they are trying to find a way to solve their problems and find healing for things that cause them pain.

There’s something wonderful about finding that one person that isn’t in a hurry and just listens. They listen as you pour out your heart and share the thing that is stressing you out. They listen as you share your hurts and try to put on the happy face, acting like it doesn’t hurt as much as what you’re feeling on the inside. They don’t have to solve your problem, but sometimes they have just the right advice to put things in perspective, and putting things in right perspective often times releases some of the hurt. I can’t tell you the number of times when I’ve banged on heaven’s door seeking answers, and sometimes that’s where I get them. At other times, God puts the answers we need in other people because He wants to involve others in our life. It’s His way of helping to cultivate relationship. We are not created to be independent, but inter-dependent, as God’s plan for mankind is to love one another and be knit together in one big family. We need each other, and we need the gifts that God has distributed in human vessels.

 I think we need to get over the idea that we somehow have to come up with all the answers to life’s problems on our own. We can’t always trust the advice of the world, but if we’re listening with our heart we’ll be able to discern God’s counsel. God’s voice is distinctly different than our own thoughts. We’ll know when God has just given us an answer we need because our spirit will witness to that truth. Sometimes we need to have a conversation with someone who is not close to us and can be objective. Objectivity can help us open our heart to see things from more than our own perspective. There is the bigger picture too, of course, in that we tend to find healing for our own life and forget about ourselves as we love on others. Don’t focus on those you can’t help or those that don’t want your help; lift up your eyes and look for the people that God brings across your path. The world is full of hurting people that are desperate to be heard. Desperate to be healed.  Desperate for a touch of God or a prayer. They just want to know someone cares.

P.S. Anyone that's looking for a great stylist and hair salon...check out RocknHair Lounge at 1911 Sunset Drive, Suite D; Escondido, CA 92025. You will love them!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Prayer for Life in the Womb (Healthy Pregnancy)

Are you believing for a child but have problems with conception or miscarriage? Expect your miracle because God wants to give you one! I know the pain and heartache of losing a baby to miscarriage. This is my testimony and a prayer at the bottom.

About 6 months before my husband and I got together, all of a sudden my hormones began to drastically change. I had a friend who knew of my longing and desire to find a husband and she laughingly said, "God is preparing you to have another baby!" at which I said "that will never happen!" And I meant it. I was closer to 40 than I wanted to be and it just didn't seem to be in the plans for the future. At least not the way I had thought! 

Lo and behold, guess what happened? My second child was born in 2004. There was 19 years difference between my oldest and my baby. She has always been deeply loved and  blessing from the Lord. A couple years later, we were not thinking of having any more kids. This time, I had a different friend come up to me and tell me I was going to have another baby. Again I laughed. She was serious! A few weeks later we went away to a pastoral conference. During the weekend we were encouraged to listen for the Lord and believe for Him to tell us what exactly we needed to ask for. So I asked. Three times I heard the Lord say, "Ask me for your Joshua." I about stumbled over that one. I wasn't sure I wanted to ask, sensing it might mean another child. I didn't know if I wanted to have another child, but I was willing. My husband and I went back to the room to pray and we asked God if having another child was His will. Then we asked Him to give us the child He had for us if that was what 'asking for our Joshua' meant. Two days later, I went home and took a pregnancy test and found out I was pregnant.

All of a sudden, I was overjoyed at the thought of this pregnancy and it awakened a longing for a child I didn't even know existed within me. One week after I felt the baby move for the first time, I miscarried. On the way to the hospital, the Lord told me it had been an attack by the enemy. He spoke peace to me. In the E.R., he told me this was my testimony and to trust Him, so I did. No matter what the doctors reported, I believed in faith because of what I had heard from God. During the time I was cramping and bleeding, I heard the Lord ask me if I would surrender my right to be healed. I couldn't imagine why He would ask me that. I thought maybe it was an Abraham kind of test, you if I said yes to my Isaac he would give him back. I surrendered, and I meant it. After all, I was laying there miscarrying so what could I do to stop it? And He allowed me to lose that baby. I felt cheated. I was so devastated. I felt like God set me up to believe and then yanked it out of my grasp. I was so angry and hurt all I could do was grieve. I was raging with anger towards God and felt like I was losing my mind. The torment was incredible. I finally cried out for God to please fight the enemy for me. Clear as a bell, I heard, "You fight him. And next time, watch your blind spot."

That was like a slap in the face. I guess I needed that. God wasn't joking, but neither was the enemy. He meant to take me out of the game permanently. Instantly I stopped crying and repented for my anger. I submitted to God then stood on the principle of James 4:7 and resisted the enemy.He left immediately and I got my peace back, but then I needed to figure out what God meant by telling me to watch my blind spots. I had forgotten that about 6 weeks earlier we had taught a weekend seminar on deliverance and uncovered a lot about the Jezebel assignment of witchcraft. What I did not understand at the time we did that is that the enemy saw an open door through generational sin and had a legal right to strike out in retaliation. That's another long story but you can find out more by clicking on the link on the home page that deals with generational curses.

After the miscarriage, we went away for a weekend to regroup. We went to a prophetic church and during that weekend my husband told me he heard the Lord say to believe against all odds. The doctors had told me that with advanced age and my hormone deficiencies I would not get pregnant again. At best, all they could recommend was very costly fertility treatments and even then the odds were not in my favor. Talk about against all odds. We had to stand on faith alone and trust God. He put us in a place of having to believe God for the miracle. I went up to get prayed for and told them I was believing for a healthy baby. The prophet told me 'this time next year' I would have a baby, and he was right.

I found a website with many prayers against infertility and birth defects and began to declare the word of God over my womb. The first month passed...then the second...I grew impatient and began to plead with God because I felt like it would never happen. Then my husband went to the store and came back with a little blue baby outfit. He said faith without works is dead, and we needed a visual reminder that God was true to His promises. Then we sat down to worship and my husband began to call for his child out of heaven and to be put in my womb. He called him by name (we had decided on Jace, which has almost an identical meaning as Joshua). And so my husband called those things that "were not" as though they were, and the next month I was pregnant. This time around, we went back to the doctor earlier and again we got precautions not to set our hopes on the pregnancy making it. They wanted us to be reasonable but I kept telling the doctor God would provide. By the time I got to 36 weeks, the doctor said, "Well, you made it. I didn't think you would, but it looks like everything is going to be fine." No doctor intervention. No fertility treatments. Just God. My son was a whopping 9 lbs. 5 oz. at birth. I was 42 and my husband 49. If you want children, don't let anything stop you. Sometimes God just waits until a couple are both in agreement; sometimes there are other factors, but my children and proof positive that all things are possible with God. It doesn't have to take thousands of dollars in fertility treatments if you put your trust in Him. There is nothing stopping you. He just has to get our faith and belief adjusted so that doubts are not hindering our prayers.

Oh...and by the way...that "Joshua" the Lord told us to ask for was also granted. God gave us a double blessing. The meaning behind asking for "Joshua" was strategies to outwit the enemy. Joshua in the Bible was a military strategist, and that is what God gave me. I had to be broken in order to be filled with more of Him, and though I didn't understand it all at the time, God gave me the most awesome gift. Immediately after the miscarriage I started to have dreams where I could see and understand the enemy's plans and know exactly what his intentions were. Pretty cool, huh? Revenge is sweet!

Father God,

I thank you that children are a blessing from the Lord. I stand before You today and declare YOU are faithful. I will enjoy the blessing of children for you have given me your promises.

Your word declares in Psalm 127:3 that the fruit of the womb is a reward and Psalm 128:3 also promises that I will have children that flourish like young olive plants in my home. I declare the blessing of Prov. 31 over myself and my womb, that the day will come when my husband and my children will rise up and call me blessed.

I declare according to Your promise in Exodus 23:26 that because I love you and serve You and worship You, O God, You will bless my provision; you will take sickness away from me and I will NOT suffer miscarriage or be barren. I will fulfill the number of my days, in Jesus name.

Father, I remind You of Your promise in Malachi chapter 3. I tithe and am a giver, Lord, and because of that, You have promised to rebuke the devourer for my sake. You promised that the devourer would not destroy the fruit of my ground and You said my vine would not fail to bear fruit in the field (vs. 11) so I thank You for fruitfulness to come forth from my womb and that the devourer is rebuked in Jesus name.

Lord, You also said in Job 22:28 that I would declare a thing and it would be established for me so that light would shine on my ways. I make this declaration now and ask You to establish this for me.

I declare the decree that I will not miscarry according to Your promise in Exodus 23:26.

I declare that my body is now and will continue to produce abundant levels of all hormones necessary to maintain a normal, healthy birth. I declare my progesterone levels are increasing exponentially daily and will continue to do so throughout my pregnancy.

I declare that I will bring forth a healthy child out of my womb. I call for my children to come forth out of heaven and into my womb. I speak life into my uterus. I break the power of every negative word over my body, my family, my future, and children yet to come.  I declare I will not experience placenta previa, leaking of amniotic fluid, premature miscarriage, pre-eclampsia, abnormal bleeding or any other complications. I declare that you have an appointed time for childbirth and I will not give birth before that appointed time. I declare that the placenta will adhere normally and be of correct size and in the right position to support a healthy pregnancy. I declare the fetus will implant in the right place and be securely attached to the uterine wall. I declare that all cells will divide normally and each cell will produce healing and perfect soundness as it forms new life inside of me.  I will not experience ectopic pregnancy, congenital defects, inherited disease or other abnormalities. If it is not allowed in heaven, I do not receive it. There is no disease in heaven, Father. I resist those things and declare all possible inherited generational curses broken now in Jesus name. Father, please forgive anyone in our family line that may have neglected to ask Your forgiveness for their sins. Forgive, I pray, sins of broken covenants, broken trust, idolatry, rebellion and any ungodly covenants that may have been made. Let them be broken now in Jesus name. Please forgive any inherited generational iniquitous sin and let the blood of Jesus be applied to those sins. I declare that I am a new creation in Christ and there is life in the blood. I thank You, Lord Jesus, that Your DNA flows through me to make me whole and complete in every way. I thank You for your Holy Spirit that is full of life, strength and power. Let the perfect soundness and wholeness that is in Your Spirit flow through me and release healing throughout my body. I declare no curse will pass through the blood of Christ. I submit to Your Lordship in my life and I resist the power of evil. I refuse it and declare it will not come near me. Father, I ask for a double portion of restoration. I thank You Father for continuing to show me how to pray specifically as I believe for a healthy pregnancy. In Jesus name, Amen.

#Prayerforhealthypregnancy, #Healyourwomb, #Prayerforchildren, #Prayeragainstmiscarriage, #Breakgenerationalbarrenness

Monday, April 9, 2012

The Answer Is Hidden In Plain Sight!

 The early church found love, acceptance and family in God by making an effort to form community where they lived, worked and socialized. By doing so, they found a sense of belonging. Through the forming of community people found their social needs as well as practical needs were met. I think it is the misconception that people must belong to a church in order for that to function in their lives, but the "church" is us. We take Christ into every place and every situation with us. There is no reason why a sense of community cannot take place where ever we allow the light of Christ to shine! When we make a determined effort to release love we are also going to find that what's in our hands and in our house will find it's way to help others in need. Generosity, kindness and a desire to help others is what allows God to work in any situation. How often we pray and wonder how God will answer, but often we will find that as we have been praying for one thing, someone else has also been praying for something else. He just needs a good excuse to make us cross paths with the person that can release the blessing He has for us!

How often I have found this to be true. I can tell you many testimonies of God interrupting my schedule just so that He could put me in the right place at the right time. Maybe someone needed a prayer. Other times it's been a practical need. But God made sure to get me where I needed to be at the right time. Sometimes He wants us to have a conversation with someone in order to reveal more of His plan. Rest assured, whatever your need, whatever you have been praying for is often found right under your nose!

Often the answer is hidden in plain sight but people can be blind to it. It's like looking for something you lost and you keep looking right past it when it's sitting right there on the counter in plain sight. Ever done that? Perhaps it is because a person has not had a response of faith, or perhaps they wanted the answer to come in a different way. Sometimes the answer is hidden until a set time when God suddenly allows people to have their eyes opened, and sometimes we must ask for God to open our eyes and show us the answer. We  learn to accept the answer that God gives, whether or not it is according to our personal preferences. You may feel that you have not yet received an answer, but just because you feel that you haven’t received an answer doesn’t mean the answer hasn’t been sent. It might mean you haven’t listened hard enough.

Father God,

Help me to have the response of faith. Forgive me if I have not been paying attention and you have already sent answers to my prayers. Right now I reject and refuse all unbelief, judgments, opinions and resistance to the answer to my prayers. I believe by faith that in as much as I am an answer for others that have a need, the answer to my prayer is also made available to me in others. Please open my eyes to recognize the answer that is right in front of me. Give me eyes to see how I can be the answer for others, too. Please give me a heart that is willing to accept Your answer, and respond in faith to whatever you show me. I don’t want to miss the time of my visitation! I know you work through human vessels, Lord, so please highlight the ones in which You want me to pay attention. Open my ears to hear the message that is communicated. You have an answer that I need to receive, so help me to receive it. I thank You for adjusting my heart in whatever way is needed so that I can respond in faith to the answer that You have sent. In Jesus name, amen.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Jesus and the Adulterous Woman

Many women seem to carry the guilt of past events, failures and emotional baggage as if they don’t understand that they can let go of them. Jesus took them upon Himself at the cross. They don’t belong to you anymore! It’s time to release the weight of these burdens instead of carrying them around with us. God wants to break all false yokes of condemnation!

What we see throughout the gospels is the ongoing theme of two worlds colliding. The kingdom of God challenged kingdoms of men. This was true in Jesus' day and it's true now, in every nation, tongue, tribe, and culture. That is why the gospel message as well as the scriptures remains just as relevant today as when they were written. It's important to understand that this is what sets the tone for the gospel accounts. It was the power struggle between the existing religious order and the message of grace as Jesus came on the scene. In almost every place or situation, power encounters and struggles for control are at the heart of many spiritual battles.

In the gospel accounts, there was a tremendous amount of tension because the old order did not want to make room for grace. Jesus knew the real matter was about power and control. With the Pharisees, it was always about who would control the people. They wanted leverage, and entrapment was the method they choose to try to fulfill their agenda. When hearts are wrong, judgments will be skewed. They weren’t interested in justice or truth, they were interested in getting rid of the anointed one (Jesus) that could see through their motives and free those under ungodly control. God gave people a living example of His grace because their belief system was rigid and unyielding. Their hearts were bound by fear and pride and grace offended them. Jesus knew their judgments were predisposed to judgment and fault finding. What is interesting is that when Jesus was in the wilderness being tested and tempted by the enemy, one of the first things Satan did was challenge His identity. In Matthew 4:6 Satan said, “If you are the Son of God...” Satan was appealing to Jesus’ humanity and trying to create doubt. Satan knew if Jesus didn’t know who He was, He would not be able to fulfill His purpose. The interesting thing is, once Jesus began His ministry, He was the one that challenged the religious crowd on their identity issues. He told them they didn’t know what spirit they were of and they didn’t know who their father was! He knew who He was, and who did not belong to His Father! Identity issues are at the heart of many problems, and it was no different in Jesus’ day. The balance of power was shifting! Prophecy was being fulfilled before their very eyes!

Jesus was always clear about the fact that He was a messenger sent to reveal a Kingdom and a different reality than what they had known.  Jesus said if a person saw Him, they saw the Father. John 1:17 says that 'grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.' The people needed someone to demonstrate the reality of the message of grace, so Jesus showed them how it was done. He gave them grace when they didn't deserve it. He didn't fight back when people wanted to kill him, mock him or spit angry words in His face. Instead, He demonstrated real concern over their welfare by speaking truth in love and showing them in practical ways how the Father really loved them. He healed them, fed them spiritually, multiplied food when they were hungry, and cast out the demons that tormented their souls with fear. He encouraged them, spoke kindly to them, and didn't condemn them for their sins. Love wants others set free, healed and restored to God. Love wants relationships restored, healthy and moving forward towards the good plans that God has for people's lives. Jesus, in His own words, proclaimed that the one that came to Him would by no means be cast out. (John 6:37) God’s heart is for restoration, not condemnation.

The Encounter with the Woman Caught in Adultery

John chapter 8 gives us the story of a woman caught in adultery who was dragged to Jesus by a mob of angry Pharisees. In perhaps one of her worst moments of shame this woman found refuge and forgiveness. The enemy only has power when his schemes are covered by the cloak of darkness, and when no one stands up to defend those he attacks. This woman found a defender and a liberator in Jesus Christ. The Pharisees wanted to test Jesus by challenging him to a duel of the law. They thought they could force him into a corner. Instead, Jesus reminded them of things that pricked their own conscience and brought such conviction that the crowd dropped their stones and walked quietly away. “He who is without sin, cast the first stone,” He said. Perhaps he wrote the 10 commandments in the sand, or perhaps he wrote things pertaining to their own sin that only God would know, but it was enough to convict their consciences and shut down the attack of the mob. Condemnation is a tool of the enemy which he uses to strip us of our real sense of identity. Legalism thrives on condemnation, finger pointing and people comparing themselves to others. Jesus knew this. This is why He never backed down and he didn’t let others control him. He stood his ground. When the accusers left, Jesus asked the woman, "Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?" She said, "No one, Lord." And Jesus said to her, "Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more." (John 8:10,11)

The Liberator Sets a Woman FREE from Shame

Religious spirits aren’t afraid to make a public example out of others in order to exercise fear and intimidation as a means of controlling others. Jesus didn't condone the woman’s sin, but He didn't condemn her, either. The amazing thing is, He extended grace without her even asking for it. Before He went to the cross. Before she prayed a "sinner's prayer" or demonstrated repentance. Nothing speaks more of the Father's intention to extend forgiveness and grace than this verse. This woman didn't know Jesus personally, but she was about to. She met Jesus when she met Grace and Kindness. Who doesn't want to know a God like that?

God did not curse the woman. If He had cursed her, he would have to curse us all, but He sent His Son to deliver the world from condemnation and judgment. We are all guilty of being the adulterous woman. We are all guilty of elevating judgments and criticisms more than we have loved others. We are all guilty of sharing our affections with worldly lovers. We’ve loved materialism, greed, ungodly attitudes and allowed other masters to divide our loyalties to the One who came to save us. Many people have had one foot in and one foot out of God’s Kingdom, wondering why they haven’t experienced more from life. Yet, even when we were still sinners, Christ laid down His life for us. The answers we need are found in Him. The very purpose for which He was sent to this earth was to demonstrate God’s great love, mercy and kindness to a world that had no idea of their true identity as sons and daughters of the Most High God. Over and over in the scriptures we see GOD humbly taking our rejection, anger, betrayal, as He watches and waits for people to realize how much He truly loves us all. He won’t break covenant with us, but so many times we have broken our vows to Him, even when we told ourselves we would live to honor Him. When we may be tempted to judge others we must stop to remember the adulterous woman lives inside all of us. If we judge others, we reap that same judgment into our own lives according to the principle in Matthew 7:1.

 Jesus was there to liberate her, and He is here today to liberate all of us. Jesus didn’t condemn her, He consoled her. This is a wonderful example of how Jesus stepped in and became her advocate. He took the position as her defender, her attorney. This is the power of the cross of Christ and the cleansing power of His blood! This is the message of the gospel! Jesus stood between those that wanted to have her stoned and saw no value to her life, and the Father’s desire to have her experience the goodness of God. The Pharisees cared nothing about this woman’s life, her feelings or her future. They wanted to stone the woman but Jesus wanted to set her free. They looked for someone to accuse and to blame; Jesus looked for someone to forgive and exonerate. The truth is, hard heartedness blinded those that thought they could see, and the kindness of God allowed a sinful woman to experience an encounter with Divine Love. Her eyes were opened to see Him in Spirit and in Truth. The mob mentality was anger and hatred from people who weren’t interested in knowing Grace; they were only concerned about being right. A bunch of angry, offended people presented the facts, but they weren’t living in truth, at least not the truth of the scriptures they seemed to hold in such high regard. Fear is at the root of religious legalism. A religious spirit looks for ways to manipulate and control others. It withholds acceptance and approval until demands are met by those wielding control. A religious spirit is exclusive rather than inclusive, and it divides rather than unifies. A religious spirit will try to make people’s judgments sound biblical but often they are not. God always acts in mercy before He is willing to execute judgment. That is just who He is! He extended forgiveness of sin and acted in this woman’s defense. He didn’t demand brokenness from those that were already broken. He comforted them, spoke kindly and reassured them that as they came to Him, (an act of faith) - their sins were forgiven. What graciousness! What love He displays that releases peace to the lives of those that desperately need Him! The important thing for each of us to understand is that God expended His wrath upon His Son; He hasn’t held it back to unleash it upon us. The price for the sin of all mankind has already been paid in full. It wasn’t a down payment. The BLOOD of CHRIST is sufficient! We can’t earn any part of the grace that Jesus paid for with His blood. The bridge between sinful man and a Holy God has been made through a relationship of love. God’s intention is not to condemn the world but to save those in the world. If the message isn't the good news of forgiveness, grace, restoration and relationship then it's not the gospel. It's somebody else's message, but it isn't the message the Father sent by His Son.

It is the kindness of God that leads men to repentance. How often we forget! And when we forget to be kind, how can people possibly see or understand the kindness of the God that Christians profess to serve? We are messengers of a different reality, a different kingdom than what people are used to.  We are ambassadors sent from the Father, just like Jesus was sent to us.

Jesus confronted heart issues and what motivated people to exalt their judgments above the law of love. Jesus told the Pharisees in John 5:39, "You search the Scriptures for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me. But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life."  Jesus was trying to get the religious leaders to see beyond the physical aspects of teaching to the real issues, that if they believed on Him they would have eternal life. Pride blinded them to their own need for grace and so they rejected Him in the process. The law that they used to judge others became the law that was used to judge them. They exalted their knowledge of the law to the point where it completely blinded them to their own need to come to God on His terms. No one can come to God on their own terms and be justified. They must come on His.

In the story about the adulterous woman there were people that were convinced they were righteous, but weren't following God at all. They followed a god of their own understanding and clearly missed the boat entirely when it came to understanding Father’s heart. The irony of the situation is that they accused the woman of adultery but they were equally guilty of spiritual adultery. They weren’t having a relationship with God. They loved their judgments more than they loved Him. They loved their false gods of control, pride, unforgiveness, anger and hate. Jesus did not come to condemn the world. He came to judge the works of the enemy. There is a big difference. "For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved." John 3:17,18

This story in John 8 reminds us that no one is above being tempted by the enemy, no one is above failure. Jesus judged with righteous judgment because He did not judge by the flesh. (See Isaiah 11: 3,4) He took all things into account, including heart attitudes, motive and intent for people’s actions. Our position is not to act as judge or juror against others, but to show grace and mercy in hopes that kindness opens the door for people to be reconciled to God. Release words of life or share a testimony. Tell someone how God met you with love when you didn’t deserve it. Encourage others the way you would want someone to minister to you. It is so easy to judge someone else without having to walk in their shoes or live their life. Sometimes failure is life’s greatest teacher, and failure is the thing God uses to bring people to Himself. The God of compassion meets people at their lowest point. Even when He brings correction, He is gracious and kind.

The story about the adulterous woman carries a profoundly deeper message of hope for every person. The Book of Matthew chapter one lists the genealogy of some very notable women among the catalog of names. Four women in particular are mentioned and given extraordinary emphasis: Tamar, Rahab, Ruth and Bathsheba. Each one was notorious for having a disreputable reputation and carried the stigma of being “unclean” or “unworthy” in every sense of the word. Even Mary, a young virgin girl who would become the mother of Jesus - handpicked by God because she said yes to His greater purposes - bore the burden of being falsely accused. She bore the reproach of a disgraceful reputation for many years. Do you think that others believed she was impregnated by the Holy Spirit? Did they even know who that was? She said yes to God but His favor meant that she had to carry the stigma of being marked by God. God is not afraid of shame or reproach on a person’s reputation. He allows it to be there for a reason. Each of these women had a strength, determination and tenacity that refused to give up. Against all odds, they overcame. They wrestled with God and man and prevailed. This is the quality that God looks for in those that will give birth to His promise.

God is not put off by people’s sin. Jesus took care of our sin issues. God Himself provided the solution for our redemption, sanctification and justification. God supplies the grace and uses the scandal, accusation and pressure to birth what He wants to release into the earth. He chooses people that the religious cast out, deem unfit and despise because it causes them to be jealous for His encounter in their lives. He loves His bride but He is jealous for the world, too. He will win them to Himself using vessels the church has rejected and cast off. “But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 28 God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, 29 so that no one may boast before him. (1 Cor. 1:27-29) God is outrageous in the ways He chooses His servants. His ways are incomprehensible and far above the thoughts of man! What good news for all of us! There is no sin or bad reputation that is beyond God’s ability to redeem and restore. His arm is not too short to pull those who call on His name out of the deepest pit. He can lift the lowest of the low out of the ash heap, out of despair and shame, and place them in royal lineage just as He did with Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, and Bathsheba. He can use the woman that is the outcast, the rejected, and the least likely to win the spiritual Miss America pageant. What these women could probably not foresee was the bigger picture of how their life would impact generation upon generation of those that would come after them. This is the truth that we all need to understand. It’s not all about us. God’s love is so deep for mankind, He wants no one to perish. He wants all people to be saved. He is willing to go to great lengths to restore each of us because first and foremost, we belong to Him. We are His children. God uses our lives and our testimonies to reach more people, all with the intent purpose of winning them back to Himself so that others can enjoy the blessing of knowing their sins are also forgiven, and share eternal life with Christ and our Father in heaven.

The question each of us must answer is, Can God forgive so completely that the stigma of a scandalous reputation is no longer a sign of rejection?” Can people be transformed in their minds, looking at the reproach and stigma of a tainted reputation and see it in a new light? Will people stop to consider the fact that God remakes our human vessels? The very things that might offend our sense of propriety could in fact be the very mark of God that indicates an individual has received His approval and acceptance. If there is anything offendable in us, God will bring it to light. He will challenge the self-righteous attitudes in all of us. This is the decision all will come to when God chooses to work through ordinary, earthen vessels that have been redeemed, refashioned and made honorable for His purposes. Praise God that He never throws away the clay! Praise God that He sees people through eyes of faith! He knows exactly where to find something worth redeeming in us - because He put it there! Praise Him, because your life is not outside the grasp of a loving God that has good plans for your life, thoughts of peace and not of evil. His ways are not our ways; they are so much higher than what we can imagine. God’s wisdom turns the kingdoms of men upside down.

Lord Jesus,

Thank you for liberating me from shame. Thank you that even when I fail, Your love and acceptance are constant and assuring of my place in the kingdom. No one can take that from me. Thank you for standing as a shield and a protector from the voice of condemnation. I love You, Lord. Please continue to unravel the lies I have taken into my belief system so that I can be truly free. In Your name I pray, amen.

#Jesuslovestheadulterouswoman, #Jesusourliberator, #Heunderstandsourpain