The ENTIRE football team from NC A & T visited my church yesterday. I was completely unaware of their attendance until the coach was thanked for choosing to worship at Mt. Zion and asked them to please stand for acknowledgement. Imagine my surprise when DIRECTLY behind me for at least four or five long rows back the whole football team silently stood in unity. My spirit leaped as I looked behind me and swept a glance across all of those tall, hulking players. (Man, they were enormous!) I promise you that in the spirit I didn't see a football team at all. I saw twelve legions of angels looming over and providing for me (Matthew 26:53); a great cloud of witnesses watching out for me. In that instance I was immensely humbled for I "saw" God's confirmation that He is Jehovah- Shammah. Moments later I warmly embraced several of the players during the meet and greet. With evident strength they embraced me back and it was if I were briefly visiting with archangels. Returning to my seat, I felt sure the Spirit whispered to me, "I've got your back." If you took the time to read this, that whisper is also for your life today. No matter what you may be going through even in this very moment... GOD'S GOT YOUR BACK. Period.
Stretch your arms wide and freely embrace this brand new day! No matter what the backdrop (yesterday) may have been, as long as there's breath, there's fresh opportunity for moving forward. No looking back allowed for DESTINY is surely ahead and not behind you. Get it together and move towards the mark. 3 Things to keep in mind as you reposition: 1) Hear the voice of God, 2) Listen to His strategic instructions, and by all means 3) Trust & obey what He says when He speaks. You're built for this so the only thing left to say is, "Onward!"
Have you ever felt like you were literally swirling and twirling in a whirlwind of change? Well I have sure have and I'm certain that I'm not the only one because change is an integral part of LIVING this life! The good news is that whirlwinds are preordained agents of change that have an attached promise that cannot be broken by our God who is constantly making all things new.
If you don't believe it just take a look at an expectant mother's sonogram at eight weeks and then again at twenty-six weeks. What can be seen is undeniable growth and development necessary for healthy life. Next, check out the lowly, underestimated caterpillar that crawls on the ground in the beginning. Now, fast forward to the end of the metamorphosis cycle and marvel at the beautiful creature that has evolved and emerged. Wow, talk about an example for change. This reminds me that I actually have a poster of a beautiful butterfly who has come into its own after a process of time. The quote by Trina Paulus says: “How does one become a butterfly?" she asked. "You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar.”
The revelatory thing about the butterfly however that is often overlooked is that the only possible way it can become its finished product is that it first has to die. Oh my. It is impossible for me to comprehend this, to write this without recalling the precious words our Saviour, Jesus Christ spoke so long ago in John 10 that still live today: Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father.”
A little further on John 12 reads: Most Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain. He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor.
No matter where we are on our chosen routes we always have the prerogative to CHANGE our minds. As a matter of fact God has been waiting on many to do just that so He can show up and show out in our lives. We must not be insistent on staying a course, remaining in a relationship or continuing to mourn what God has rejected. The moment that we are willing to relinquish our wills... will be the moment that long awaited manifestation appears. Selah.
Through every situation requiring an intelligent decision, we MUST stand on the sure Word of God and trust that His promises are true. At every crossroad, we cannot lean to our own finite understanding that has a track record of leaving us stranded every time! Rather, we must acknowledge Him in all our ways knowing that He's ever faithful to direct our paths if we're sensitive enough to follow.
Since not making a decision is inadvertently MAKING a decision we have to pray and seek the mind of God. Then we must resist the temptation to pretend that we didn't get or understand the answer if it's not the one we desired. If we say we trust Him, we must keep believing, keep speaking, keep praying and keep standing until He makes it do what it do. Selah.
Fred Hammond really knocked the ball out of the park with this old school vibe. I was just thinking on how much it has been raining ALL DAY LONG and this song came to my spirit. The children of God have to constantly press on this walk that definately is "not sunshine every day."
Truth be told, there are inescapable days when it not only rains, but pours and a mighty bitter cup at that. The Good News is that we have a Saviour whose name is Jesus, the name above all names who is able to help in times of conflict, chaos, confusion and calamity. At the preordained sound of the timer, He lovingly leads us to a safe place of refuge that allows us to be renewed, rejuvinated, replenished and recalibrated for the next leg of the journey.
Therefore, Beloved, rest along the journey if you must, but even when tempted, don't quit! Pull out your umbrellas, slip on your rain boots, button your raincoats and PRESS on through the storm! Press inspite of, press because of, press anyhow, press anyway, press regardless of, PRESS until either "IT" or "YOU" changes. Selah.
Life Coach, Iyanla Vanzant, says: "Everything that happens to you is a reflection of what you believe about yourself. We cannot outperform our level of self-esteem. We cannot draw to ourselves more than we think we are worth.”
Have you took a good look in the mirror lately and if so, did you like the image you saw? Was the person looking back at you someone you are happy with, proud of and even encouraged by who she ... IS BECOMING DESPITE all she may have been through?
In class this week my Professor shared many of the common reasons or excuses students give for why they just cannot make it to and in school. He shared the details of a particular conversation that went something like this...
Student: "You just don't understand. I'm having problems with this, and this and this. As a matter of fact, I'm really going through hell." Professor: "GO FASTER!"
Wow! Every hellacious thing that happens to us has been given specific instructions on just how far and how long it can affect us. What we have been given are specific instructions on how to realize that no weapon formed against us can prosper, to tuck our cloaks and "GO FASTER" by the grace of God through Jesus Christ!
The power of the LORD came on Elijah and, tucking his cloak into his belt, he ran ahead of Ahab all the way to Jezreel. (I Kings 18:46)
Palm Sunday is the Sunday before Easter, and marks the beginning of Holy Week. It marks the week of events leading up to Jesus' death and as we observed it today in worship, I felt my heart skip a beat. My heart tightened as I had an epiphany or "Aha moment" as I waved my palm branch as high as I could lift it up.
"HIS LIFE FOR MY LIFE!" My spirit leaped at the fresh realization that CHRIST ACTUALLY DIED FOR ME! I am consciously aware that I am alive today because Christ humbly saddled a donkey to fulfill prophecy and save the whole world from sin. He allowed Himself to be hung on the Cross at Calvary to fulfill prophecy and save the whole world from sin. He endured the piercing in His side to fulfill prophecy and save the whole world from sin. He ROSE again to fulfill prophecy not only concerning His life, but for my life and the lives of my children and my children's children! Hosanna! Hosanna to the Son of David! Yes, Blessed Is He Who Comes In The Name of The Lord!
Jesus taught simply through parables. No parables today but check out these "Power Thoughts":
1) Be good to life and life will be good to you!
2) Movement inspires movement so get it together and do something!
3) Everything needed today will come by way of Divine Connection!
There is such beauty to be found in SIMPLICITY as it relates to everyday life. Teaching, learning and growing need not be so deep and spooky all the time! That's one of the reasons Joyce Meyer is so embraced worldwide. More importantly, it's a key to getting souls added to the kingdom. Selah.
“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.” - Harriet Tubman
I submit to you that this year is a year for DREAMS coming true like never before. As a matter of fact it has already started for those who have 1) allowed yourself to dare to believe again and, 2) have put movement to your reaffirmed belief.
Many years ago I was blessed to "star" as Harriet Tubman in an awesome production by Pastor Jacqueline Shaw. It was a dream come true because I had always admired this great woman, this female Moses, of uncommon faith & favor. A few of her most memorable quotes are:
As a child Harriet was beaten by masters to whom she was hired out. Early in her life, she suffered a severe head wound when hit by a heavy metal weight. The injury caused disabling seizures, narcoleptic attacks, headaches, and powerful visionary and dream experiences throughout her life, but guess what? She REFUSED to allow any of these things to deter her from her assignment to fulfill the visions/dreams implanted and entrusted within her by God. She realized it was not about her anyway, but about the souls assigned to her and as a result, God made it all work for her good!
Had she spoken to the slaves in our modern day language, I imagine she would have said: "HONEY, GET LIFTED!" She understood that the dream of freedom could become reality if the slaves would only put it into action under the protective covering of darkness. Long before R. Kelly made "I Believe I Can Fly" a national motivational anthem, Harriet Tubman had literally walked it out.
The same God that led her successfully through so many dangers, toils and snares is yet leading you today so in closing I simply admonish you to think bigger, wider and wilder (outside the box). Dust that dream off, get the mind of God concerning what safe route to take & "GET LIFTED!"
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts. - (Isaiah 55:8-9)
1) "Aaa-chewwwww!" That was the sound of my sneeze!
2) "I feel like praisin', praisin' Him. I feeeeel like praisin', praisin' Him! Praise him in the morning, praise Him all day long. I feel like praisin', praisin' Him." Now THAT was the sound of my song!
Tissue, Robitussin, Advil, throat spray and cups of hot tea containing honey and 4 Halls cough drops have been my constant companions all week. This cold has really tried to get me; has tried to DISTRACT me from my verbalized intention of "finishing the year strong" but I declare that I shall not be defeated! Lol!
I woke up this morning feeling as though I've turned the curve and I feel led to remind all the Martha's today to "Relax, Relate & Release!" That thing, like my cold, is just a distraction honey. Don't trip... it will be OK. Get done what you can & let the rest go. Just let it go & seek the most excellent thing, which is to sit at His feet. It's amazing that in our quest to meet our own self-inflicted goals, we sometimes major in the minor while God is really not impressed one way or the other. Push past the distractions and ask Daddy-God what He really needs from you this 3rd day before Christmas. Is it more shopping for just the right gift? Is it more baking of that last little mouthwatering sweet? Is it more cleaning so that everything shines just so for the house guests that you really wish wouldn't come? Or could it be more time spent with Him so that all else gets into proper perspective? Selah.