Something has to change….

One Day Legacy

something has to changeSomething has to change.

I think we can all agree that something has to change. We can’t live any longer the way things have been going. Something has to change.

I, with all conviction of the Holy Spirit and God my Father, believe what needs to change is me. You. Us.

There is something to the fact that my husband and I are pastors, lead a 24/7 prayer ministry called City Gate, and oversee several other ministries, and then God telling you, something has to change. This isn’t a sin issue that needs addressing. I promise there isn’t sin in the camp. But there is a tension. A holy pulling or tugging, that started at the beginning of 2016.

So I did what everyone else probably does, and thought about it. Then pretty much ignored it. But the tension in my spirit kept growing to the point that I could…

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Something has to change….

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something has to changeSomething has to change.

I think we can all agree that something has to change. We can’t live any longer the way things have been going. Something has to change.

I, with all conviction of the Holy Spirit and God my Father, believe what needs to change is me. You. Us.

There is something to the fact that my husband and I are pastors, lead a 24/7 prayer ministry called City Gate, and oversee several other ministries, and then God telling you, something has to change. This isn’t a sin issue that needs addressing. I promise there isn’t sin in the camp. But there is a tension. A holy pulling or tugging, that started at the beginning of 2016.

So I did what everyone else probably does, and thought about it. Then pretty much ignored it. But the tension in my spirit kept growing to the point that I could barely function in my roles because I felt like such a fraud and failure. Again, please hear me! This isn’t a sin issue. It became a Son issue.

I surrendered.

For those who know me, I am an avid reader. Books, the Bible, commentaries, stories, it really doesn’t matter. The best gift in the world to me is an amazon gift card. God usually uses books and specific authors who I trust and value to mentor me. So it wasn’t by chance that the books I was planning to read in July were all different titles, but the same message.

Something has to change.

Seriously, I started with “Operating in the Courts of Heaven” by Robert Henderson and it confirmed how prayer needs to change.

I read “Rooted” by Banning Leibscher and again, we need to go back to our original root system of living in the secret place, prayer and intimacy with God. Change is needed in our approach of life to be rooted in Christ.

Then I read “The Intercessors Handbook” by Jennifer Eivaz and it just confirmed what the other books I read were telling me. Change is needed.

“Angel Armies” by Tim Sheets. I thought this was going to give me a break in my reading about something new. But no. Change is needed. Movement it needed. We can want all the change in the world, but if we don’t move, nothing happens. Something new is needed. And Change is needed to move.

Finally “The Jesus Fast” By Lou Engle & Dean Briggs, put the seal on the change.

I knew God was telling me for quite some time that “This doesn’t happen but by prayer and fasting”. Lou’s book, along with several others just confirmed to my spirit, that the change that is needed, is us changing.

In order to do what Jesus did, we have to do what Jesus did.

If we do not do what Jesus did, then we wont’ do what Jesus did.

We will have lots of meetings and events, hype and great worship. But no change.

The change is personal in that is has to be me and you making the change.

Something has to change if we want to see Thy Kingdom Come.

Acts 2 happened and the world as they knew it began to change, but they had to start in Acts 1.

What did they do?

Prayed. Fasted.

What happened?

The Holy Spirit happened.

When I say we need to change in our prayers, I am suggesting that we begin to pray what God already told us to pray – His Word.

When I say we need to fast, it isn’t to get something, it’s to give something. Our time. We need to change how we spend our time.

For so many, and for so long, we think that if we attend a big event with big names, then we have done our part. But we come home and are the same on Monday.

Something has to change.

God is pulling us in a new (yet ancient) direction. A new movement, a change. And for any movement to work, it takes movement.

What are we willing to change in our life, our structure, our agenda to allow God to move?

The something that needs to change is us. If what we are doing is working so great why are we still so thirsty?

Here is my suggestion. Get in the Word. Read your bible like you read Facebook. Spend as much time in the Word as you do Sports Illustrated. Pray prayers from the Word like Ephesians, 1 & 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Colossians. Fast.  Give up one meal a day, and spend it reading and praying. Give up something that you love to show you love God more.

We cannot keep doing the same things we are doing and expect a new thing to happen.

Something has to change.

Are you with me?

 

 

I want/need/don’t read my bible.

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I have many people ask me how to read their Bible. Or how to study the Bible. My first thought is, well, you have to open it, look at the words and begin reading the sentences. bible-and-coffee

It isn’t that people don’t know how to read it. It really comes down to we don’t really want to read it. Everyone knows how to read. We read each and every Facebook update perfectly and even respond to some. So reading isn’t really the problem.

We even read books on how to read the bible. Doesn’t that seem a little crazy ? To have a book on how to read your bible ? We have replaced self-help books with self-help read your bible books.

So, if reading isn’t really the physical problem, then what is it?

Desire. The ‘want to’ read it, but the ‘want to read everything else’ is stronger.

We are all on this journey, if we have chosen to be. And it is a progressive journey. Just like the Shulamite woman in the Song of Solomon, it may take us 8 chapters to fully comprehend this life we have chosen.

In chapter 1 of Song of Solomon, she asks –

Tell me, you, the one I love:
Where do you pasture your sheep?
Where do you let them rest at noon?
Why should I be like one who veils herself
beside the flocks of your companions?

Today that would be – where are the ones to look up too? Where can I learn to follow you rightly? Where do I rest in your presence? Why should I be like the ones who say yes, but never do yes ?

He responds:

 If you do not know,
most beautiful of women,
follow the tracks of the flock,
and pasture your young goats
near the shepherds’ tents.

If you aren’t sure follow those who are already living in my presence, eating my Word and are truly living the ‘yes’

So here is my suggestion; open your bible and begin to read. If you don’t understand, then try another version. Visit a bible study that helps keep you accountable with the reading, but make sure it really is a bible study, where the bible is read and shared. Where you are learning and growing in the Word, not in a ‘topic’.

Sit with someone who you see that really reads the Word and has a passion for it, not just trying to sell you a book or method. Methods are great, but we can focus on the method and all the colored pencils and still not be reading.

I encourage you to read entire books, not just verses. Start with James, read the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John), read ‘God Eats Pop Corn’ (Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians)

Just read.

The more you read, the more you will want to read and the more you will fall in love with the author. Which really is the point – reading the Bible is the way we begin to know God as our Father and how he talks to us.

I use a bible without study tools or added features for reading. Sometimes the added study tools, although awesome, can distract you from just reading. I do use a study bible, or several for when I want to dig into the Word at a deeper level.

I hope this encourages you to open the most beloved book from the most loving author.

 

 

 

The Lord is near…

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….to all who call on Him.

This is usually how we end this verse. We encourage people saying “God is near”. And He is. But not near as in a vending machine, that when I am hungry, I plug some cash and get His presence.

I think this is what happens when we read the Word for a quick fix or to find a verse to fit an argument, or like a band-aid. We just cut and paste a verse to fit my or any situation.

What would happen if we read the whole verse from Psalm 145. Or actually read the whole Psalm 145 ?

You would have a better understanding on why and how He is near.

Lets again read verse 18 (which often we only read the first line)

The Lord is close to all who call on Him,  yes, to all who call on Him sincerely.

From another translation is reads:

The Lord is near to all who call out to Him, all who call out to Him in integrity.

What is my point?

In our prayer life, we know that God is near. From all of His attributes we know that He is omnipresent and omniscient. There is never a time when He isn’t near me.

But how He responds to that nearness with me, depends on how my heart attitude is. It says with sincerity, or with integrity.

Just like our physical posture can dictate, so can our heart posture. For example it isn’t magical to stand during worship or kneel during prayer, but it does do something to my heart posture to kneel, stand or even raise my hands in surrender.

I think most times we begin to demand things, like “God you are near me, so do this and that NOW”.

Can you just hear the arrogance in that ?

Then, we are so very disappointed that God didn’t do what I just told him to do. Loudly. Because I probably screamed at Him like a spoiled child.

When my heart comes to Him sincerely, with integrity, other versions say “call on Him in truth (without guile), that is showing a posture of understanding that He is God. And I would have known that if I read the entire psalm 145.  Just saying.

He is near when I come to Him in Truth. What is truth ? The WORD.

It tells us in the Word, that the Word is the spirit of truth. I can come to Him when I am coming speaking truth in my heart, because His Word of truth is what I am declaring from my heart.

The Lord is near to all those who call on him, with sincerity of heart, with integrity, without guile, but in Truth –

Do you see how that changes things?

I can know and feel His nearness by how I chose to receive His nearness. I receive it by knowing it, declaring it and allowing His nearness to take me even deeper in walking out that integrity and sincerity.

If I am just screaming out that God is near, and I want Him to do what I say, I probably won’t feel His nearness. Why? Because if I have to tell or demand God to do something, I am saying that I know more than Him, which makes me a god telling God what to do. As if He is waiting in Heave for me to tell Him what to do.

To be a person of the Word, we have to really read all the Word.

The Word backs up the Word. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.

It’s a promise and God keeps His promises. He is obligated to and by His Word.

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perfume, soap and hope {five minute friday}

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This is a story that exposes a part of my life that I never thought was a big deal. But God has a way of even making the small things HUGE lessons.

Hope. I do have hope. I have always had hope. But now my hope has taken a turn and has been mixed with trust and a little repentance.     Hope painting

We (our house church) have been studying Nehemiah – (which I highly recommend that everyone reads and studies) and this past week was on how he dealt with finances, and finances and leadership. How he steward’s his finances.

I really have been dealing with this in my life lately. How am I stewarding finances. Basically for me (and probably many reading this) the overspending and over splurging using that darn JCP or Kohl’s card. That Kohl’s cash is like a drug to me !

I know that God has been pushing me to give them up, and stop using them – but it appears my hope was in the plastic instead of the listening.

So I began the process of surrendering my will in the shopping arena to God. Repenting of over spending, greed, thinking I needed something I really didn’t. I really didn’t have hope that I would ever get or purchase things I wanted or needed. {insert eye roll here}

It is funny how when I was at the mall, I really wanted to just go buy those pesky soaps at Bath and Body – it was a sale for Pete’s sake !!  When would I ever get to purchase 7 for $25 again ??? But I walked past.

Then walking through Kohl’s seeing designer perfume on clearance – I immediately thought I NEED PERFUME – and for all intent and purpose I really love perfume, and have been out of ‘good’ perfume for a while. Come on – you know what I mean !

I even had items in my hand at both stores. They were on sale people ! Who doesn’t love to save money and who doesn’t love a sale !

But I didn’t purchase.

Instead of buying, I actually began to sell some things that I didn’t need any longer.

So I actually told and shared with our church that night about how we don’t even realize how much our finances are either honoring God or not – and I was not honoring him with my spending. Of course my husband was smiling, and I wanted to smack that smile….but I am a nice person, so I smiled back.

Here is where my hope story grows.

A sweet couple brought items from their home they didn’t to share with us at church. I looked in the box and thought, eh, nothing I really want there.

Then after church (after I shared) I looked back in the box and there was a brand new – not open  bottle of perfume. NOT KIDDING. And a NEW bottle of Bath and Body hand soap. I AM NOT making this up ! It really was there – and I knew that it was a lesson from God.

IF we truly put our trust and hope in Him, for every area (even the areas that we think we did, but didn’t, so do ), if we give Him our will, lay down our guilt – He immediately responds.

How Great is our God ? !

How merciful !

He is waiting for us to give Him every area so that He can fill us and actually show us what hope looks like.

cute_heart_shape_empty_perfume_bottlesFor me hope looked like a new bottle of perfume. (do not despise the day of small beginnings)

What does hope look like to you ?

 

 

fear {five minute Friday}

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I never really thought of myself as a fearful person. Of course I had the fear of the dark as a child, and I admit that even today, I walk really fast if I am in a dark room.

But as a grown woman, lover of God and of all He tells me I am in Him, I don’t consider myself to be in fear.

I know all the verses and can whip them out like band-aids with the best of them.

But pondering this word today – I realize that I do fear.

I may use another word that sounds better – like ponder, or question, or I wonder – but I think it might actually come down to fear.

Fear of: am I doing the right thing, at the right time,

Fear of: will the ministry’s lease and bills get paid this month

Fear of: am I possibly drinking too much coffee

Fear of: am I hearing God correctly

Fear of: being fearful

What I am seeing is that sometime we cover fear with questions and then call it something else – like …’I’m just asking’ but isn’t it really based in the reality that comes from fear?

Fear of: failing       fear

Fear of: losing

So I am thinking that again today – I am going to choose to hand over the questions, the outcomes, the ‘fear of’ and picking up peace, and probably more coffee

But really coming to terms that just because I can quote a bible verse, doesn’t mean that fear doesn’t exist, it’s what I do when I realize the root of the question and where it stems from.

After writing this, I am feeling less fear and more hope – I am not except from fear, I just have something bigger than my fear to lean on, trust in and rely on.

 

 

 

what seed are you eating ?

you have to change the inside to see results on the outside –

One Day Legacy

I have been dieting my entire life. Today the scale did not lie. It showed my over indulgence or addiction to cakes, pies and desserts.

So I hit the pavement again this morning, pondering the book I just read by my friend Joyce Tilney called “Why Diets don’t work – food is not the problem”   ( http://www.whydiets.com/ ) and I was hit with a revelation that I want to share with you. Take it,  join with me or laugh and leave it.    book-cover-front-e1359421292739

It’s not what food we eliminate or take away from ourselves, it’s about the food we DO eat and put into our body. When we focus on what we cannot eat, we enter into a poverty/diet mindset. And you will always want what you cannot have – look at the Israelites – didn’t they crave the ‘choice food’ from Egypt, but God had a super food for them in…

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Summer in the Psalms

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This is your personal invitation. (And your invitation to invite others!)

I am inviting you to join me and many others as we take the month of July and devote our time to reading the entire book of Psalms and Proverbs.

Did you know that if you read 5 Psalms each and every day, in one month you would have read the complete book of Psalms ? add 1 chapter of proverbs and you will have completed 2 books of the bible in 1 month !

Billy Graham once said that reading Psalms teaches us how to talk to God, and Proverbs is God talking back to us.

Psalms teaches us how to worship, how to expand our prayer language and get an understanding of what a prayer life could look like.

Each day you read 5 psalms – that is five complete ‘chapters’ – so for day 1 – beginning July 1st,  you would read Psalm 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.. and Proverbs 1, then on day 2 you would be continuing with psalm 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 and Proverbs 2

then you post or comment on page what God is showing you, what you are learning, what character or attribute of God did you see.  You can also join me on Facebook and invite others to join !

https://www.facebook.com/events/357805107748778/

I will also be posting what I am learning and what Character traits I am learning about of my Father God.  Use the #summerinthepsalms  and you can post pictures and ideas for others – you can also share with me on my instagram account ( I think it is on the side of the blog to connect with me on social media )

Get ready !

Pick your translation of the bible you want to ready !

Have colored pencils ready to color the words or phrases that captures your heart.

I am so excited to hear what God is speaking to you !

 

 

gift. {five minute Friday}

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Gifts are awesome ! Who doesn’t like getting a gift ? One of my favorite gifts to receive is probably an amazon gift card…its the gift that keeps giving ! Plus I love to read, so it is perfect for me. Or coffee mugs and coffee. It is my addiction.

But, I really love giving gifts.

For me, it is sometime easier to give a gift than to receive a gift.

When someone gives me a gift, I can almost act like it isn’t a good gift, because I just don’t know how to receive gifts. Or I get nervous and start my nervous talking – PLEASE someone stop me !!

Anyone else like that ?

I want gifts.

But they are so hard for me to receive !

I wonder if that is how God feels?

He keeps giving us gifts and we keep piling them up, not using them or really thanking Him for giving them. Are we afraid of His gifts ?  Or just to busy to even acknowledge them ?

Think about it. We are breathing today. That is a gift – did you thank Him for it?

You are loved, you are accepted, you are chosen – did you thank Him for that ?

gift-giving

Look at this picture – ‘the manner in which it is given is worth more than the gift’ – how powerful is that?

Maybe our response is wrong ?

What if every gift that came to us everyday from God, was acknowledged with thanks, praise and wonder – that the gift itself wasn’t the focus. But the giver was !

What if we didn’t focus on the gifts but the giver ?

The manner is which God gives us these gifts are free but yet so costly

and we should be thankful and in awe

So today – unwrap the gift He is giving you – and thank Him for it.

and if you happen to send me a gift – I will gladly thank you and receive it !