Tag Archives: renewing my mind

I’m HOPEFULLY devoted to You!

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So I am reading through the book of Luke with some amazing women and yesterday as I read Luke chapter 1, the Lord really spoke to me. As I was emailing them with what He brought out for me, He made it clear that this was a word to be shared with all. So, here goes…..why don’t you read Luke chapter 1 and then continue reading. (If you don’t have a bible handy, I LOVE biblegateway.com)

So, as I was reading I took notice of Zachariah and Elizabeth. The Lord had said He was going to give them a child. The bible states that they were both very old. Elizabeth had been unable to have a child, she even called this a ‘disgrace’.

25 “This is the Lord’s doing. He has shown his favor to me by removing my disgrace among other people.”

As I thought about this couple, who,” were both righteous before God, blameless in their observance of all the Lord’s commandments and regulations,” and had their dreams crushed time and time again. I can just feel the pain of month after month, no pregnancy. Prayers left unanswered. I can feel the sting of constant disappointment and heartbreak. And yet, they still continued to serve the Lord wholeheartedly.

The Lord began to show me how this can apply to all of us. Have you ever felt disappointed because the desire of your heart was not given to you in the time frame you were hoping for? Have you ever been heartbroken by seemingly unanswered prayers? Have you ever given up hope on a dream because it seemed the time had past, the circumstances would never be right again, you had missed your window of opportunity, or maybe feel you are just too plain old to dream a little dream?

Well, what was the Lord doing for this devoted couple? He so longed to give them the desires of their heart. I know He was hurt watching their suffering, all the while knowing He had such an incredible honor and blessing for them. He sent them a child, in their old age, who prepared the way for the Messiah, Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior! WOW! AMAZING!

So what I believe the Lord is saying through this awesome example is, He could have given them the desire of their heart on their timing, but He loved them too much to allow them to miss His best for their lives. He chose to answer their prayer in a MUCH BIGGER way than they could have ever hoped for. He chose to bless them in such a supernatural way that everyone took notice and PRAISED GOD for this miracle, realizing that NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR GOD. He chose to use their blessing not only to bless them, but all of us for all generations.

EPHESIANS 3:20(NIV)

 20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us

I believe what God is saying is that if He makes us wait, it is because the blessing we receive, the answer to our prayers, the giving of the desires of our heart, will be so much grander, and have such a greater purpose than we could ever hope for or imagine, that it is worth the wait!

Also, we can learn from their devotion. They were called righteous, and it was noted they kept the Lord’s commandments. Can you imagine if the one thing you have asked God for, you felt He had asked you to surrender, and having such gratitude and reverence for WHO GOD IS, over who He seemingly wasn’t, and still serving Him with all of your heart? This is a big concept for me. Their example of being righteous, and serving the Lord, despite their hurt, confusion, and sorrow, has definitely caused me to ask the Lord to help me mature, so that this will be my choice in the midst of the storms I will face in life. I believe the Lord could use them for this honor and miracle because of their obedience, their love, and their wholehearted devotion. This lifestyle has become a desire of my heart.

So I guess what I have been asking myself, I will ask you too. Do you really believe, “37 For nothing is impossible with God?” Are we living in relationship with who God is, or with who we have known Him not to be? Are we remaining faithful through our hurts, heartbreak, and let downs?

Friend, we do not have the details of how they remained devoted, but I know the people in the bible are not fictional characters, they are real people just like you and I. I believe they were not perfect, in fact righteousness is a gift from Jesus, meaning: right with God, and that only comes from Jesus. I believe they were able to be real with God,expressing their deepest wounds and finding rest and peace above their pain in His love. This is not a message of :Suck it up and serve anyway with a smile on your face.” This is a message of: take your broken heart to Jesus, asking Him to make a beautiful mosaic out of it, more creative and passionate than the original. Run to Him, not from Him. I believe this is the only way we can remain devoted through our struggles. Lay down your need to understand, recognize He is God and we are not, TRUST HIM, but be real about where it hurts. It is in this vulnerable posture that His love will begin the healing process, and once you have been there and received from this place, you will NEVER want to be anywhere else. This is where true devotion, true righteousness, true deep and passionate intimacy with the Lord begins and never ends. Will you go there? I hope so.

Lord Jesus! Thank you for such awesome love. Thank you for being our healer. Thank you for knowing us so intimately that you can restore everything we have lost in the battle. Thank you for caring about us so passionately, that you won’t give us everything, to ensure we can be available to receive Your best. You are the best. All I want is You! I love You Lord. I need You Lord! It is in Jesus’ name I pray. Amen!

Ask! ASK! AAASSSKKK!

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Ask ask ask! The Lord keeps reminding me, ASK SPECIFICALLY. He shares with me a message to give to someone, “Stop settling for what you can see, I have more for you than that, but you have to ASK.”

I feel led to send a friend a  picture text with a word of encouragement about her gifting and talents from the Lord. She replies, “Thank you! This is an answer the a very specific prayer.”

At the leading of the Lord, I have been asking Him much more specifically when I am in prayer, and He is answering specifically. I almost feel like He is showing off. =) All kidding aside, this is for us. This grows our faith. Everything He does is because He loves us and has our best in mind. He is always for us!

So, when He first said, ASK SPECIFICALLY, I got a little nervous. I almost felt like I would have more opportunity to be let down. Once I realized I was believing this very sad lie, I started seeking the Lord as to why I initially felt this way. Basically, the root is fear. I was afraid of really believing God for miracles because I didn’t want to give Him the chance to hurt me, let me down, or make me feel really stupid for believing with all of my heart. I begin wondering who else do I have this attitude towards, but that’s a story for a whole other entry! =)

Why are there times when we ask, ask, ask and it seems like none of our prayers are being answered? Or maybe the opposite of what we have asked for is what happens? I believe what the Lord has showed me is how He is God and we are not. There are times when we will have to surrender the need to understand why something happened, or didn’t happen, and recognize that there is a bigger picture and all things will be worked together for our good. It is also important to realize the effect of sin. We do have free will, and so does everyone we love and pray for. There are consequences for sin, and we need to be careful not to blame God when sin is the cause of destruction. He is way bigger than sin, but we have to come to Him, and ask for forgiveness, turn to God and away from sin, be redeemed by the blood, to walk in His Will for our lives.

The next question I had was, “How do I know what to ask for?” There is scripture that deals with asking according to His will. then also, there is the one about delighting myself in Him, and then He will give me the desires of my heart. He is teaching me to ask Him to show me what He is up to, before I begin asking for what I think I want, in any given circumstance. It may go something like this:

Lord Jesus, thank you for so and so. Lord I know you created them fearfully and wonderfully. I know you have a plan and purpose for their life. Lord I know you love them. Would you show me what you see when you look at them? Would you show me your will for their life? Would you teach me how to pray for them? How to love them? What is Heaven’s heartbeat over so and so?

Usually, after I ask this way (and often this prayer is about myself and my circumstances) He totally changes my perspective. Most of the time there is at least a sliver of judgement in my heart, and He totally undoes that by humbling me with His incredible love for each person (including me) that I pray for. There is power in agreement, and this shift in my prayers has allowed me to come into agreement with the Father’s heart. It is when I come from this place, that I do not feel afraid to ask specifically, because I feel confident that whatever He wants for whomever is totally possible.

So today, I want to encourage you to allow Him to upgrade your relationship with Him. Allow Him access to the part of you that you have been saying, “I’m not ready to go there yet.” If He is prompting you, it will be worth it. ASK ASK ASK. Do not be afraid. Find out what His will is, what His perspective is, and come into agreement with His heartbeat. You are about to see specific answers to specific prayers that is going to grow your faith like crazy!

P.S. I wanted to share a bunch of scripture on asking, but felt led to take them off because He was telling me that He wanted you to dig for them. Have fun excavating the truth! There is a treasure to be found for sure!

He Makes it ALL worth it!

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Today I can’t help but think about this scripture out of Romans.

Romans 8:28 NLT

28 And we know that God causes everything to work together[a] for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.

I keep finding myself saying a breath prayer of, “Thank You, thank you…” for this promise. Have you ever taken a moment to consider how inclusive the word “everything” is. That is an amazing promise. This means that even when the suffering is great, it will still be worked together for good, and that means we never have to suffer in vain. I’m not sure about you but I believe this promise is a key to how we could even consider the command found in James 1.

James 1:2-4 NLT

Dear brothers and sisters,[a] when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

I believe they only way we can consider trials as an opportunity for joy is when we know the truth that even the suffering will be worked together for good. For me, it makes the trial, though difficult and painful at times, a blessing  because I can consider that on the other side of this I will be stronger,and have more testimony to share which is what makes us OVERCOMERS!

Revelation 12:11 (AMP)

11 And they have overcome (conquered) him by means of the blood of the Lamb and by the utterance of their testimony

I am really learning this year that to be positioned as an overcomer in Christ, it is absolutely imperative that I trust the Lord.

Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT)

Trust in the Lord with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,
and he will show you which path to take.

He has really shown me that when I lay my understanding down at His feet and I seek Him for what He is up to, that is when I will be in step with the Holy Spirit with my very thoughts and actions in agreement with the Father’s Heart. It is in this place I can ask and receive according to His will. It is in this place I will find that all things are possible.

When we have surrendered our understanding and placed all of our trust in Him,  admitting our total dependance upon Him, we are positioned to take authority and start overcoming as a co-laborer with Christ anything that is holding us or our loved ones back from everything God created us for!

James 4:10 NLT

10 When you bow down before the Lord and admit your dependence on him, he will lift you up and give you honor.

See all of this came by simply thinking upon one promise in His Word that I have hidden in my heart. This is the kind of rabbit-trail I’m thankful for! Would you please consider joining me in memorizing scripture verses so we all can be having more of these divinely inspired rabbit-trailing thought patterns? I would love to hear yours!

Psalm 119:11 NLT

11 I have hidden your word in my heart,
that I might not sin against you.

Lord Jesus, I love you! Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for your Love and how constant everything about You is. I know I can trust You. So I declare right now, I trust You with my life: my present, my past, and my future. Lord, thank You that You will work everything together for good.  Thank You that I can overcome anything with You. Thank You for continuing to expand my testimony of Your goodness, kindness, faithfulness, and gentleness upon me. You are worthy of ALL glory, honor, and praise FOREVER! I love You Lord! It is in Jesus’ name I pray! Amen!

Misunderstand….ing?

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One day not too long ago, the Lord began speaking to me about being misunderstood. He said, “Do not worry if others misunderstand who you are, or why you do and say the things you do. You are in good company with me, because most of my creation will never understand me.” His tone was loving with a hint of sadness. I pressed in for more. He continued, “Especially Holy Spirit, most of my bride will never fully accept Him. Jesus wasn’t even received when He came in your form, and how We are the Trinity, most people accept but never understand how beautiful that is.”

This got me thinking about how much it hurts when you just want people to “get” you, and you  can’t seem to find anyone on the same page. There are a lot of people who accept others, but I know for me there is a deep desire to find others who will invest in understanding me, getting me, loving me. Could it be that the Lord feels the same? We accept Jesus as our Savior, but does it stop there? Do we invest in Him, getting to know Him, figuring out why He works, acts, speaks the way He does? We accept that the Holy Spirit lives in our hearts, but again are we inviting Him to be intimately involved in our every moment or are we basically ignoring His presence? Do we ever consider the mystery of the Trinity? Three in one, Father, Son, Holy Spirit, working together in perfect relationship to love us flawlessly, this is incredible!

As I looked up scripture on this very topic, I discovered an interesting twist as to how we act on our misunderstanding, but first the scripture and then I will share the revelation.

John 8:43

43 Why do you misunderstand what I say? It is because you are unable to hear what I am saying. [You cannot bear to listen to My message; your ears are shut to My teaching.]

This is Jesus speaking on how we would listen to what He said, but not hear Him.

Matthew 5:17

Teaching about the Law ] “Don’t misunderstand why I have come. I did not come to abolish the law of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to accomplish their purpose.
This is Jesus speaking on how we could not even understand His purpose for leaving Heaven and humbly coming to Earth to save us.
Matthew 12:31-32
 31-32“There’s nothing done or said that can’t be forgiven. But if you deliberately persist in your slanders against God’s Spirit, you are repudiating the very One who forgives. If you reject the Son of Man out of some misunderstanding, the Holy Spirit can forgive you, but when you reject the Holy Spirit, you’re sawing off the branch on which you’re sitting, severing by your own perversity all connection with the One who forgives.
This is the one I would like to expand on. When I looked up other versions, the misunderstanding which leads to rejection is put into the word, blasphemy.

Blasphemy:

blas’-fe-mi (blasphemia): In classical Greek meant primarily “defamation” or “evil-speaking” in general; “a word of evil omen,” hence, “impious, and irreverent speech against God.”

Then the Lord began to speak  about how when we simply misunderstand something, anything, for any reason, our normal reaction is to reject it and then speak out against whatever that is. We often do this to each other with we have a disagreement, we often call it a “misunderstanding”. So I began to ponder some areas in my life where I have some pretty strong opinions but not a whole  lot of facts. Could it be that I simply do not have an understanding, and to protect myself I have an opinion, completely unfounded? Could it be there are things about the Lord which I do not have an understanding for, so I manipulate scriptures to make Him understand’able’ to me, and tell everyone else they are wrong if they don’t agree with my understanding? Or how about others who think, look, and act differently than I do? Could it be that somehow I think only my way is right and until they conform to what I understand to be right they will remain ‘misunderstood’ in relation to me? Is that how Jesus loved? I believe Jesus loves each of us for how different we are. I do not remember  ever reading about Him trying to fit any square pegs into round holes. =)
So I urge you today to ponder if you are in a misunderstand…ing with anyone, including God in all of His uniqueness. Ask Him to open your heart to a deeper understanding of others and of Himself. I believe we will find freedom and more than likely, stumble upon a few more people who will end up ‘getting’ us. Be blessed today Friend.
Father, Your love is amazing. Your acceptance of us is incomprehensible. But the desire you have to be in relationship with us is what continually blows my mind. Lord would you bring to my attention any area where I have built a wall, a prejudice, a rejection that is against you or anyone you love. I ask Lord for you to soften my heart and help me have a teachable spirit. I do not want to hold on to anything that doesn’t encourage or uplift. Lord, more than anything teach me more about You. I want to be more and more like You! I love you Holy Spirit. I love you Father God. I love you Jesus. I love you my Triune God!

Coming up Higher!

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The other day the Lord spoke to me about something which seemed to come out of nowhere because it was not something I was particularly dealing with or thinking about. Then it dawned on me, it’s not all about me. =) LIGHTBULB…..It is good to remember that He speaks to us not just for us, but often times to share with others. To add to that thought, what usually ends up happening, is something the Lord speaks to me for someone else, I usually end up needing soon thereafter. What can I say? It’s a process, so keep track and pay attention to everything you hear from Him.

I’m also being taught not to add anything to what God has spoken. Lately, He has been renewing my mind by showing me how I had made assumptions to what He shared with me. He is teaching me how those assumptions led to expectations I have placed upon myself which have actually been distracting me from His Will. He has even been showing me how we all tend to read His Word from our perspective instead of His, which then makes it hard to believe and even recognize it manifest in our reality. We tend to be looking for the wrong thing because we are expecting God to show up in the way we understood the written or spoken word.

I would like to share a revelation I had a few years ago with you to further illustrate what He is still trying to teach me. =)

Ephesians 2:4-6 NLT 4 But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much,that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!) For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus.

A few years ago I read this scripture and the word, “seated” was like jumping off of the page to me. Seated, as in present tense??? I was so confused and a little angry. I began asking the Lord,  “How in the world am I suppose to believe I am presently seated in the heavenly realms when I am SO OBVIOUSLY here on earth!!!!!!!!!!” I told Him, “I believe your Word is true and that you selected EVERY WORD carefully. I cannot see that the tense of this verb could be a mistake, but I have never experienced Heaven even though I am in Christ!” I begged Him, “Lord, please teach me how this is true. Please show me how I can be in two places at once.”

After I had finished my passionate ranting, the Lord quieted my spirit and asked me, “Are you finished?” I was and finally he showed me a giraffe. A giraffe? That’s all He had to say???? “Lord, can you please explain?”

Finally, I got the revelation that the way we can be in two places at once, on earth and in heaven simultaneously, is that our minds are to be in heavenly places ( think of the giraffe’s long neck and mind way up high) while our bodies are on earth(the giraffe’s feet are on the ground). So I started to seek Him as to how our minds can be in heaven. How do we enter that place?
Psalms 100:4 MSG

4 Enter with the password: “Thank you!”
Make yourselves at home, talking praise.
Thank him. Worship him.

This is what I am still learning. When we come before the Lord, we first praise and thank Him. We do this because of who He has been to us, which means we do this by remembering His faithfulness. As we remember His faithfulness, our faith begins to swell. We are making an exchange. A transaction of worry for faith, fear for trust, hopelessness for peace, is taking place when we choose to magnify the Lord over anything else.

Once we have spent time worshipping Him for who He is, we have been lifted up higher. It is beautiful. We come to a higher place in His presence, where we see from His perspective. We can see what He sees, what He is up to, and then supernaturally we can come into agreement with His plans and purposes even though we still may not understand them.

Can I encourage you today to spend time praising and worshipping the Lord? Spend some time remembering His faithfulness, goodness, kindness, and LOVE upon you. Rejoice over answered prayers of days past and miracles that have no other explanation than God. Ask Him to bring you up higher, to show you His perspective. He will usher you into an intimate place and lavish you with Himself. If you then choose to open your Bible, you will see things you have never seen before. If you choose to open your spiritual ears, you will hear things you have never heard before.  You will never be the same.

(P.S. I would strongly encourage you to have a pad of paper and pen in hand so if He has anything to share with you, so you are prepared so you can remember later, ask Him more about it, and check it according to scripture.)