Like the little children

Wow!  I’m up, Lord.  I’m up!  Funny how a little thing like a text can get you up and running.  lol  (Inside joke, long story) But… here I am and here we go!

“Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”  He called a little child and had him stand among them.  And he said “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.  Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”  (Matthew 18:1b-4  NIV)

Now, there is a lot going on here.  We tend to think of humble as bowing in deference to the Lord, but let’s examine the behavior of children.  When little kids are around people, especially those they are familiar with, notice what they do.  They ask questions.  They invade your personal space – lol – I’m a mom.  My kids are all over me all the time.  My youngest  are toddlers and that’s a whole ‘nother level of invasion.  They poke; they prod.  They climb in my lap.  They get nose to nose.  They examine every little mole and freckle.  They play with my hands, my hair, my earrings, etc.  They tell me I’m pretty, ask about scratches… I also worked in a daycare as a teen in the toddler/pre-K room.  It was no different.  I had a little girl whose favorite thing to do daily was to sit in my lap and play with and stare at my hands.

What if we went to the Lord like this?  We humble ourselves differently.  We allow ourselves to be free and unencumbered like children and climb in His lap or put His arm around us and look at that boo-boo on His hands and say “I’m sorry” and kiss it to make it better like little kids do when they see Mommy’s owie.  What if we said, “I love You.  You are so beautiful” just because?  What if we touched the hem of His garment?  What if we tried to look at His eyes?  What if?  What if He totally delighted in that?  How would that change you, your relationship with Him, your outlook  on Him… your life?  What if He goes from being God to also being Abba or Daddy?

I used to cringe at people calling Him “Daddy”.  Are you nuts?!?  That’s the Almighty!!! I would even tell Him, “Lord, I might call you Father, but that’s Team Too Much.  That’s not showing enough respect.  I’ve got a healthy fear and just… wow…” And, then He used my children against me.

My oldest started in on this thing calling me “Mother” and one of the littles started calling me “Mom”.  If you know me, this gets under my skin like you wouldn’t believe.  No judgement on anyone who is called by these names; but, long before I ever had a kid, I knew I was to be called Mommy and I am to always be called Mommy even when I’m old and gray and on a stick.  I’m still Mommy no matter what.  So, finally, one day, I shot my oldest The Look as she once again referred to me as “Mother”.  “Why does that bother you and why can she call you Mom?” I said to her, “She can’t and I don’t like it.  They sound too formal.  They put a distance between us.  I’m your mommy!”  Then I heard God chuckle.

 

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God’s got jokes.  Well played, Lord.  Well played.

The floodgates of Awesome washed in.  He became my DADDY in that moment and took my walk to a whole new level.  “DADDY loves me.”  Wow!  Now if you are a Daddy’s Girl and I am – I have an awesome dad (in fact, I still call him “Daddy”.  The Lord blessed me with this awesome man so I could finally get a clue about the way He loves me, too) – then you know how powerful that really is.  That confidence in knowing you are Daddy’s Girl with the Lord, changes the game.  NOW the devil needs to really watch out.  He is messing with His baby!  Any Mama and Papa Bears out there?  Then you already know…

And, being a Daddy’s Girl (or a Daddy’s Boy) allows for a little spoiling (Ephesians 3:20, anyone?), a lot of attention and affection…  you get to experience His love in a whole new way.  It’s amazing!  Think about it.  Eden – that was it, wasn’t it?  It was created as a place for God to spend time with and delight in His children.  That’s what heaven is about, delighting and being unencumbered with the Lord.  No more evil, hurt, sick or yuck to contend with.  You get Him all to yourself and He gets you all to Himself!  Um… YAY!!!  Yes, please!  And, this Daddy’s Girl thing, this powerful knowledge that He is also my Daddy the way little girls look at Daddy (strong, brave, awesome, the coolest) has taken my prayer warrior game up a notch, too!

This brings to mind another image.  In 2 Samuel 6, King David stepped outside of the Lord (sort of doing what I was) trying to give Him this formal style honor by building some cart to carry the Ark of the Lord to Jerusalem and it didn’t go so well (You can read all about that) – “Doing a right thing in a wrong way” my bible has entitled it – David became afraid and left the Ark behind in the house of Obed-Edom.  Consequently, the house was blessed.  David heard of the blessing and went to retrieve the Ark.  He offered a sacrifice and began dancing in front of it:

David, wearing a linen, ephod, danced before the Lord with all his might, while he and the entire house of Israel brought up the ark  of the Lord with shouts and the sound of trumpets.  (2 Samuel 6:14-15  NIV)

Now, David is a king and he is essentially dancing around in front of the Lord and all these people in his underwear.  We go from “I’m going to build You this fancy cart” to I’m dancing in my drawers out in public… yeah.  His wife Michal saw it and was none to0 pleased.

“How the king of Israel has distinguished himself today, disrobing in the sight of the slave girls of his servants as any vulgar fellow would!”  (2 Samuel 6:20  NIV)

Now, I can’t get mad.  I don’t blame her on the surface.  Who wants their man dancing around in his undies in front of the ladies?  And, it’s probably a little embarrassing.  I mean, who does that?  David answers:

“It was before the Lord, who chose me rather than your father or anyone from his house when he appointed me ruler over the Lord’s people Israel – I will celebrate before the Lord.  I will become even more undignified than this, and I will be humiliated in my own eyes.  But by these slave girls you spoke of, I will be held in honor.”  (2 Samuel 6:21-22 NIV)

Well, BOOM!  Michal lost focus.  Pride took over.  The Lord was coming to dwell with them.  Forget that, “he’s acting like a fool, embarrassing me in front of some slave girls…  We’re royalty!”  Did she not see the last time taking that exulted attitude ended in tragedy?  Did she not see what happened to her own father?  Now, I’m not puppy piling on her.  I would argue we have all been guilty of this, putting on churchly airs… I’ll come back to that.

David said, “I’m sold out to the Lord.  I’ll act like an even bigger fool because I am so grateful for his blessing and He’ll honor that.”  Ever had that moment, looking like a fool to the world because you are believing in the Lord?  I did.  I have practically been called crazy, even looked upon as a fragile wretch because I refused to move from a promise the Lord gave me.  It looks like nothing is changing, but the Lord basically told me it’s gotta go down that way so when it comes to pass, they’ll know it’s Him.  He’ll get the glory and it’ll will change their whole concept of who He is.  That was a rough night, but I stood my ground.  My Daddy’s got me and He doesn’t lie.  So, like David, I don’t answer to man and I’ll keep looking like a fool because I know what I know.  I know Who He is (I AM, not I Might or Maybe) and what He said.  And when it happens, I’ll be vindicated and honored; He’ll get His glory and hopefully, they’ll know what I know, too.

So, let’s go back to Michal and tie this into our little children theme.  I have these song lyrics stuck in my head:

Have fun again, I want you to have fun;  Just like the little children, like the little children; Know how they have fun

This is from a song called “Have Fun Again” by Diana Ross from her Diana album.  Solid album, by the way.

Michal was caught up in the look of something.  Little kids don’t do that.  Put on music.  Watch them.  They just start dancing and singing and sometimes it looks like they are having fits.  They don’t care.  They are so happy!  Psalm 8:2 says “From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise because of your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger.” (NIV)  Like, who!  He takes their little praise and anoints it with power to shut the enemy down!  See, at that age, the world hasn’t messed with their perception.  If we say, “God is bigger than the devil”, they say “okay”. Done.  Faith game on point – where we need to be.  The enemy needs us to think he is equal to God in every way.  That way, he can keep running game on us and inhibit us from all the power and the authority God gives His children to shut him down.  What if we switched gears and thought like the little children.  What if we put on praise music and let go like they do, like David did without worrying about what it looks like.  What if we came freely before the throne with praise – free ourselves from this notion of “proper” worship?

I did just that and watched my kids dance and sing and heard “Why don’t you do that?  I know life is hard right now, but why don’t you just dance and sing like them?  Have some fun.  Enjoy your life.  Today is the day that I have made, rejoice and be glad in it.”  And, yes, I’ve been in the thick of it, but I can still have joy, still live, still have fun and show Him gratitude for what I have.  It doesn’t matter who’s looking because when Jesus comes, no one is going to be worried about me singing in the rain and jumping in puddles with my kids when my life was topsy-turvy.  No one is going to be worried that I let some hallelujahs fly in church that one day because I was in the Spirit – if you can’t do that in His house, this should give you cause for pause.  The Spirit should be welcome in His house and to operate as he is instructed by the Lord.

And, Lord!  Whew!  Think of the damage you are doing to the enemy camp when (as my child says during her rendition of Eenie Meenie Minie Mo) you “let your hollers go”!  If He is anointing their praise, what will He do with yours as you humble yourself and come to Him and love on Him and praise Him in this childlike state.?  Must feel like a crazy earthquake with tornadic activity and flooding going on there.  Just pure chaos!  Oh, well…

HEY, DADDY! LET’S HAVE SOME FUN!  HALLELUJAH!!!

 

 

 

Leaving Oz

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The Wizard of Oz is quite the classic.  An obvious biblical parallel could be made with the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32).  In fact, Veggie Tales did and did so beautifully.  It’s called “The Wonderful Wizard of Ha’s”.  Check it out.  That being said, I won’t go too deeply into it, but let’s set the scene.  Think of Dorothy’s trip to this wondrous place as her heeding the siren song into death that sin really is.  She’s indulged, she’s run into trouble and found herself in battle and is looking for some pay off, something to make this worth it, bless it even and finds… NADA!

“Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!” says that big, loud, intimidating voice trying to keep you from seeing that desperate, busy little being (he’s not as big as he’d have you think and he is CERTAINLY smaller than the Lord) trying to keep the crumbling illusion going – trying to keep you from the truth.

And, isn’t that basically what the enemy does?  When you realize all that glitters ain’t gold; when you realize you’ve been duped; that that Jesus guy has something better for you!?!  He gets loud.  He gets intimidating.  He accuses.  He threatens.  He distracts.  He magnifies.  He creates chaos.  He denigrates and degrades.  HE LIES!  He gets busy pushing any and every button he can behind that curtain to keep you enslaved in Oz.

Then, there’s Jesus.  He gave his life on the cross and ripped that curtain!  (Matthew 27:51)  He’s showing you the truth!  He’s exposing the root of your problem – one of the things the devil doesn’t want you to see.  The devil wants you caught up in other’s faults, the mean words spoken, bad attitudes… anything to try to justify the poor choices made, to distract you from the why’s and how’s behind the problem.  It’s usually a hurt that needs healing, shame, lack of identity… it’s always deeper than what’s visible on the surface.  It’s something that spiritual eyes can see.  Only, most of us are blind to it.  But, I know a guy who works miracles on visual issues. (C’mon, I had to!  lol)  He’s a healer and he’s got solutions!

Not only does the enemy want you blinded to the root of your issue, he REALLY wants you to miss your exit out of Oz and back to the Father who’s waiting for you to come home.   He wants you to believe you are such a wretched mess, He will NEVER take you back – that He could never love you and to throw any notion of spending eternity with Him right out the window!  But, he’s a liar and there is no truth in him.  Just like the Prodigal Son’s father was waiting on him, welcoming him back with a celebration, so, too, is your Heavenly Father.  In fact, just flip everything the devil says and you will have a clearer picture.  You’ll feel the chains start breaking.

Romans 8:38-39 (ESV) says, “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

That sacrifice on the cross is your path back.  You need to quit listening to that big, scary voice.  See through the illusion.  Believe the truth that salvation and forgiveness is a freely given gift from God.  Accept it.  Repent and be forgiven – forgive yourself, too, and take that next step back home.  Jesus knows and is The Way.

So, before I go… I wrote this on 7/24.  I’m a very busy mom and it’s easier for me to post at night.  Awesomely, today (7/25) I came across a wonderful confirmation of this on fb live.  If you have facebook and are a prodigal, you’ve backslidden… I think this will bless and encourage you.

https://www.facebook.com/apostlejohneckhardt/

Look for the video entitled “30 Days of Favor, Day 25, Lost Favor Found, Hope for Prodigals”

Praying for you, standing with you and cheering you on…

 

 

 

 

5777 and 61

This is the Hebrew year 5777.  The year of the sword.  It’s well worth researching.  Since approximately March or April of this year I have been seeing the number 61 consistently.  Honestly, I don’t remember how I happened upon it (I’m thinking a prophetic word I read somewhere), but at some point, I came to realize it was a reference to Isaiah 61.  I love the book of Isaiah.  It’s an amazing and powerful read.  Chapter 61 is “The Year of the Lord’s Favor”.  I really feel it is closely tied to this current year.  It speaks deeply to me, personally, about the giant I’ve faced, the storm I’m weathering with the Lord, my purpose…  But a few weeks ago, it hit me funny – that first verse:

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor.  He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners…

Now, obviously “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus!” this screams.  And, it’s also our call as Believers.  But, this time, it reads differently – like a current prophetic word.  I felt I was to post about this chapter sometime back – almost like a heralding; but, admittedly, my nerves took over.  (Thank you, God, for being patient.)  I didn’t know what to say or why.  The why for tonight is obedience and I trust Him for the rest.  (Don’t those two things seem to go hand in hand, trust and obedience?)  But, as frequently as I see “61” (as recently as last night at the fair of all places… lol) or its verses showing up all around me, something must be playing out or about to.

It’s a very encouraging chapter, especially for those who have been struggling.  If it’s for you, you will know it.  Rejoice!  Unsure?  Ask.  He’ll confirm it.

Praying His blessings and favor, goodnight.

Little Thieves

Funny how little obedience gets things going.  I’ve been praying for more wisdom from the Holy Spirit and today I woke up with all sorts of things dropped on me.

One such thing was what I gleaned from an interaction with my children.  My two youngest were running around playing.  They’ve been playing “Police” – which is basically Cops & Robbers.  It usually entails them crying “Thief!” and chasing a suspect of some sort.  This has been going on for a few days.  Today they were at it and it seems they were exasperated with the imaginary situation.  When I asked one of them what was going on, she looked and me and said “The thieves just keep coming and coming!”  I chuckled and said “Yes, they do.”  Suddenly, my oldest informed me that the thieves they catch are microscopic.  Odd, but yes, they often are.

It’s the little thieves that we don’t notice, that we ignore, that do a lot of damage.  It’s the little things that we allow to steal our joy, the little sin that takes root that turns into a big problem…   Isn’t that like the thief, that ancient serpent slithering in with a seemingly innocent question?  John 10:10 states “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy.”  It’s never really small with him.  He’s got big plans and he’s always on the prowl.

So, what are we to do?  1 Peter 5:8 says to “be alert and of sober mind”.  This is where asking for wisdom and discernment is key.  This will give you eyes to see and ears to hear.  It will help you decide if those thoughts are really yours,  if that thing that person said was really all that offensive, if that seemingly innocent invitation to grab some coffee is really just coffee…  And if the little thieves are already on the loose?  Round those suckers up!

Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the vineyards, our vineyards that are in bloom.  (Songs of Solomon 2:15)

Discern, discern, discern and then GET TO WORK!  God has given you the tools!  The Holy Spirit will guide!  Call on the name of the Lord!  Bind up and cast out!  Take those thoughts captive!  Lay your problems at the feet of the Lord!

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If you’re being tempted, know your weakness and call on the Lord.  He will make you strong.  He will provide the out and he can deliver you.  (1 Cor. 10:13)  Thinking negative?  Feeling angry?  Stop!  Discern the trigger.  Refuse to be offended.  Refuse to be angry.  When I catch myself and say “I’m not doing this!”  I’ll change the subject, switch gears, find something else to do.  (Philippians 4:8)  No joke, it’s hard.  I had to be taught.  (And, thank God for Jesus, he did!)  But, what I don’t do is sweep it under the rug.  I don’t ignore it.  I deal with it by praying over it and walking it out with the Lord.  I ask for revelation and strategies to deal.  See, I don’t just want to round up the thieves, I want them on lockdown!  I’m not trying to give the enemy a foothold.  My joy was too hard to come by to just hand it over to some petty thief!

BOTTOM LINE:  seek and ye shall find.  Read your bible and pray.  He equips us for all we’re up against – even giants!  😉

You’re hereby deputized!  Round ’em up!  lol

For the Ladies…

Hello.  It’s been awhile.  I’ve been struggling with what to write; some days, the courage to write and I have also been working on the Instagram account.  But, I wanted to share a beautiful dream the Lord sent me that I hope will encourage and excite you.

First, I will tell the dream and then get into what I feel it means.  Four nights in row I had a dream with a specific prominent color.  Three of the four, I felt were personally for me but night number two, I felt it was for all of God’s daughters.

I was at a bridal shower.  It was around sunset.  The sky was the most beautiful rosey pink, almost a bubble gum pink color.  I didn’t know the bride and honestly, she didn’t make a good impression – she wasn’t welcoming and the party was for show.  She had this finale for her shower.  The plan was for an airplane or something to drop gift bags to all of the women in attendance.  She darted off somewhere and I never saw her again.  While I was ready to just leave, I was intrigued.  I looked up and I got the feeling God took over and decided to deliver His own gifts instead.  The sheer quantity was beyond anything a plane could deliver.  Floating from the sky were these beautiful blush/baby pink handbags.  Against the rose of the sky, it was breathtaking.  They were amply sized, well made and unique – no two alike.  All the women were excited to get them.  While I didn’t see what was in them, they were filled with things – tools, if you will – specifically for each woman.

I did some research on the major items and themes in dream: colors, purses, etc.  The gifts were absolutely from God because they were abundant, quality and tailor made for each woman.  I was under the impression the “bride” just wanted people there so she wouldn’t have individualized the gifts.

Pink (biblically speaking) represents a heart of flesh, a right relationship with God, joy and love – all apparent in the dream.  The gifts were for HIS daughters.  We were happy to get them and since all good things come from God (James 1:17) and He is love (1 John 4:8), He was giving us gifts like a father does (Matthew 7:11).  He was giving us love and things He had lovingly chosen for each person.  I think this last part was a reference to Jeremiah 29:11.  So, overall, He was giving an abundance of love.

The purse represents identity and tools.  What do we carry around in our purses?  Important things:  identification, keys, etc.  I feel with these purses He was gifting us with identity and purpose and the tools (keys) we need to carry out His Plan.  Though I don’t know what was in each purse, in keeping with the color, most certainly love was one of and probably a main component.

Now, back to the bride – remember I said she wasn’t welcoming.  She was all about the show and the adoration she was going to get from her big reveal.  Spiritually, I think this was a hijacking of a Jezebel’s self-serving intent; but also, I feel like this is a calling for us to join in a revival of the church and the world – to inject love back into the church and the world, to make people feel welcome.  Many don’t.  For a time in my life, I didn’t.  I find it especially exciting that His daughters play an important role.  Women were present at the cross (John 19:25) and used to spread the gospel (John 4:28-30, John 20:11-16) and a virgin was chosen to bring forth our Savior into the world (Luke 1:26-38).

I felt such intense happiness upon awaking.  I pondered this and prayed over this wondering what I should say about this.  I feel like this will be confirmation for some.  And, if you read this and just want to be part of it, something caught my eye in Matthew 7:11 as I was looking up the verse to write this:

If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts TO THOSE WHO ASK HIM! (NIV)

I say ask.  God can and will use anyone, anywhere – even the passed over, the overlooked, the underestimated…  why not the willing?  Keep yourself open to His voice.  And finally, the thing I heard loudest during my prayer time, accept your gift joyfully.

Until next time, be blessed and thank you for reading.

 

Springtime Poem: A Celebration of Victory

My personal spring is here.  The clouds of my storm are departing and the Son is shining through.  Like a flower, I will open my petals and let the light warm my face… taking in the beauty of the rainbow and the sweet aroma of the One Who Loves Me Most.  My soul will leap for joy in Your Presence.  My heart will sing songs of love and praise.  I will dance in the spacious place You’ve given me with happiness and gratitude on my lips.  Today I will fall in love with You again, like I did yesterday and like I will tomorrow.

God is talking…

but is your book open?  He speaks a lot and often.  Even when He is silent, He is speaking.  It’s something you come to know as you grow with Him.  But, to be 100% real with you, if you are praying and contending but keeping your bible closed, you are missing stuff.

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He speaks to us in all sorts of ways.  I’ve come to enjoy the creativity He uses in getting a word or an answer to me, but I would have been blind to a lot of it had I not been in my bible.  I try to read it every day.  I am at the point where if I miss a day, I feel a bit off – not condemned or guilt stricken or anything like that, just off.

I have the YouVersion Bible app on my tablet and my favorite devotional is The Bible in One Year.  It’s very insightful.  You really see how the bible is one cohesive book.  And when I read, I study.  I highlight, make notes, write down things that stand out and I re-read – and not just the passage, I re-read my bible.  Something that was relevant awhile ago will take on a new or deeper meaning the next time around.  And read it all – even the Old Testament… even Leviticus and Numbers (lol).  Those are my hard ones, but they are relevant and have meaning.  They show why Jesus’ sacrifice was necessary and such an amazing, gracious and merciful blessing!  We could never perfectly keep all those laws!  And those Old Testament books have plenty of “right now” information.  Read it all.

I said all of that to say this, one of the primary languages and ways you will actually converse with the Lord (as in a two way convo) is through your bible.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read a verse that spoke to my current situation or something I have been praying over.  Sometimes a verse just sticks out and I know it’s a “pay attention” word that I need to just note and keep in the back of my head because it will come into play later.  As you continue in this pursuit you get a fuller realization of God and His love and desires for us and you’ll find yourself (if you really go for it with your everything ) with an amazing relationship with the Lord.  You’ll see His hand in everything around you and will start picking up on the subtle and varied ways He speaks.  And, you’ll also be able to discern that you are hearing from Him because it will match up to His Word.

I really felt the need to post this because a couple of days ago, something caught my eye that reminded me of a story involving Elijah – something I might have passed up by not really being in the Word.  I like to think I’m the sort of girl who will notice the burning bush and will go take a deeper look, but I’m pretty sure in my lost days, I missed a whole lot of stuff, a whole lot of much needed guidance due to blindness of my own making by not having a relationship with Him, by not listening to what He has to say.  Anyway, that thing caught my eye and I asked Him to confirm what I gleaned from it’s meaning and I got a very quick answer.  I can’t help but think, “Wow, I totally would have missed that one had I not read that, had I not heard that story.”  I wouldn’t have the hope I have today.

Open your book.  Bless yourself.  Pursue the Word and above all else, pursue Him.  “Seek ye first the Kingdom…”

 

A moment of gratitude

Sometimes, God answers a prayer so quickly He leaves my head spinning.

This morning, I was having my time with the Lord and pouring out everything in me.  I’m an emotional person.  And, as per usual, as I seem to be hitting an apex, one of my little twins wanders in and sits in my lap. Normally, I repeat my rules to them so they don’t interrupt or I walk them out of the room.  Today, I just held her and rocked her and continued to pray.  I had one of those bittersweet moments that parents know – the one where you realize they aren’t so small anymore.  Tears begin to flow and my mom guilt washes over me.

In the last two or three days, I have spent more time cleaning up after them, than I have been holding them.  This often results in super clingy children – which creates a cycle of frustration because things have to get done if for no other reason than comfort’s sake.  I just poured that out to Him, too.  And this verse came forth…

Isaiah 49:21 Then you will say in your heart, ‘Who bore me these? I was bereaved and barren; I was exiled and rejected. Who brought these up? I was left all alone, but these–where have they come from?'”

For the last year, I have desperately needed to press into Him so much so that I would often let someone watch them so He and I could talk, so I could pray, cry out and read His Word hoping for an answer, comfort, direction…  I often feel like I have gone through this year not really seeing them and loving them the way I had envisioned when I was told I was carrying them.  These beautiful little gifts given to me after a such a bitter struggle with infertility and I feel so very far away.  But, I know He will restore that lost time, too.  It wasn’t in vain.  He’s done it before for me and He WILL do it again.  But, that verse.  It is so bold in these moments.  “Who brought these up?”   It’s not only His gentle reminder, but it’s also one that causes awe.  I feel so far away, but they are doing beautifully.  HE has cared for them while I’ve pressed in.  HE helps me when things get hard.  

So, after I finished up, I went into the next room to start getting my home in order only to look up and see that same one gathering up toys.  When I asked what she was doing, she said she was putting them in her backpack to help me put them away.  I looked up, smiled and whispered a soft “Thank you”.  Moments later, her sister started helping me as well.  So, now I’m this teary eyed mess because it gets me every time… even in the little things… those tears from feeling guilty and overwhelmed meant something to Him.  How can I not be grateful, humbled and in awe?

 

Just a taste…

While I was reading Psalm 34, I came across a verse that struck me:

Taste and see that the LORD is good.  (Psalm 34:8)

And, I felt the Spirit say, “What a good thing to pray for your enemies!”  And, yes, yes it REALLY is!  Coming from the following premise, this is the Lord’s genius at work:

  • They are His children, too, just as we are.  He cares for them as He does us.  It is not His will that anyone should perish, but all to come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)

The way I understood it is if they had a taste of His goodness, they would want more of Him.  Makes sense, right?  You’ve been in the kitchen and someone offered you a taste of something that whet your appetite.  You couldn’t wait to sit down and enjoy a whole plate of it.  And, once you get that plate, when something is really good, you want seconds, maybe even thirds.  God’s goodness makes you want to pull your chair up directly to the buffet!  And, as stewards of the faith, you should want them to become part of the Kingdom!  And when they are part of the Kingdom, they can’t keep on treating you the way they do.

So, pray that they get a taste.  It’s not that they are being rewarded for their treatment of you.  No, instead, it’s like positive reinforcement for doing good things.  You pray for a taste in another area of their life that will entice them away from the wickedness.  So that they can

depart from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it. (Psalm 34:14)

Love thy neighbor.  Pray for your enemies and be blessed.  And if you will read the entire Psalm like it is my hope and prayer that you do, dear reader; you will see that He has got you covered.

SIDE NOTE:  Thank you to all of those who have begun following me on Instagram (faithFULL31blog).

Windy City

Well, town in my case.  It is crazy windy today.  It is sunny, a little cold, but crazy windy.  In the last two days are so, I’ve seen a couple of prophets mention the “winds of change”.  I told you I feel something imminent in the air.  I don’t know how long before this happens, but I wanted someone to be aware.  I have a word of encouragement.  I often get interrupted praying – I have toddlers.  Enough said.  I tend to get frustrated because just when it seems I’m in the Spirit… “Mommmmmmmmmy…”  Argh!  But, today, the break was good.  I got a word!

I told you it was time to pray big, bold prayers and put some faith behind them.  Since I released that, I’ve had images of me in armor ready to absolutely SLAY!  Demons, giants, whatever.  Just this beautiful gold armor, helmet, shield up and sword at the ready!  I’ve got that Deborah spirit on me!  Please read Ephesians 6:10-20!  Keeping that in mind, I was thinking of the situation I have been praying over.  I have used strong phrases like “storm the gates” and “hostile takeover”.   These sound violent, right?   One prophet I follow regularly mentioned having a dream of a tornado.  That is a violent wind storm.  So, I typed in “tornado bible verses” and came across one that was kind of in the vein I was praying over some prodigals in my life.

“Behold, the storm of the LORD has gone forth in wrath, Even a whirling tempest; It will swirl down on the head of the wicked.”  (Jeremiah 23:19)

Now, I’m not praying bad things over the prodigals.  I’m praying it and calling this wrath down on their captor – the enemy – who led them astray.  I want the Lord to storm the gates and do a hostile takeover of these beloved lost souls.  I remember saying, “hostile takeover” and thinking “Is that right?”  When foreign words or phrases to my everyday vernacular pop up, I’m pretty sure it’s the Holy Spirit at work.  And, this really is the closest I’ve come to speaking in tongues.  (lol)  So, I looked up “hostile takeover”.

The anger of the Lord will not turn back until he fully accomplishes the purposes of his heart.  (Jeremiah 23:20)  
I keep thinking of those lost sheep – hey, I’ve been one – and the following verses:
And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all those he has given me, but raise them up at the last day.  For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but to do the will of Him who sent Me.  And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that I shall lose none of all those He has given me, but raise them up at the last day.  For it is My Father’s will that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in Him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.  (John 6:38-40)
It’s not His will to lose sheep.  Thank God He sent the Shepherd after me.  So, here I am wanting to spread the Word, to encourage, to be a vessel, trying to point other sheep towards the Shepherd so he can bring them home.
Now pray and slay away!