Monday, June 30, 2008

Seek ye first...

This week I will celebrate my "spiritual" birthday. The 4th of July holiday always reminds me of the day I ran to Him. Like most births, it was traumatic. I'm doing well and all of a sudden, I'm being forced to leave the comfort I've known into something unknown. I wasn't brought forth gently and sweetly, I was limp, dying and gasping for air. He breathed the breath of life into me and I have never been the same!

In my growing up years I went to a good bible teaching church where I learned Bible verses and came to believe in God. But what I believed wasn't all right, much of it was warped/twisted. I can't say it was anyones direct teaching that lead me astray but I do know that my enemy satan came to deceive me of the Truth, just like he did Eve in the garden.

After being born again at the age of 27, a verse captured my heart. "Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; Matthew 6:33. For the first time in my life, I experienced unconditional love. I knew God was love and I believed He loved me. And I wasn't going to miss out knowing this God of love.

The scripture verse in my devotional today was Matthew 6:33. So again, I am drawn to the one who had been seeking me all along. The author says "seek" is a verb. It is active, urges pursuit and has an object. I have pursued God over these 30 years and have a much greater picture of Him today than on that first day 30 years ago. But I noticed that we are to seek the Kingdom. This is another world from which I live in. It is above anything I have or experienced here. And it has a King and he is like no earthly king. I am to be conformed and live in the heavenly, the divine and not in earthly limitations. Luke 17:21 says. "the kingdom of God is within you". I don't have to go somehow to get the kingdom because it's already here, in me. Wow! Lord, I am in the Kingdom and the Kingdom is in me! This blows my mind! Talk about fireworks!!

So this 4th of July, I want to celebrate that the "the kingdom of God is at hand". I'm going to explore this kingdom inside of me like I would if I was moving to a new place. I'm going send out change of address cards, not of this world! I'm going to settle in this new place and abide there with the King of the kingdom. And I'm going to invite people into the place where I live, the kingdom. And when asked where I'm from, I'm going to declare...The Kingdom!!

Since our nation is celebrating it's independence this week, I hope you will reflect on your independence. Are you free from this world, it's trappings and its ruler, satan? If not, you can change your address. Seek ye first the kingdom..the ruler of this kingdom is longing to come into your heart and set up His kingdom. If you haven't already, you can ask Him to do so today. Happy Independence Day!!

Friday, June 27, 2008


I've been rereading one of my favorite books, Supernatural Ways of Royalty by Kris Vallotton. It's so full of rich insights I'm learning all over again. I hope you will also read the book and if you attend Christ Community Church join us in a book discussion on Saturday, July 26 at 5pm.

He says in the beginning of Chapter 3 "Many people spend their entire lives reacting to what they don't want to be instead of responding to the call of God on their lives". He references the story of Jacob and Laban. After Jacob ran off because he cheated his brother out of his birthright he ends living with his father-in-law, Laban. Jacob actually now lives with a "familiar" spirit. Laban was a cheat too. In fact, it appears that quite often Laban was a bigger cheat than Jacob. We are at the place in the story where Jacob now wants to leave, because he is tired of being cheated. Jacob was blessed by God and he was bringing good fortune to Laban. Laban did not want to lose a good thing so he said, "name your wage" but please stay. Jacob knew that whatever he made, he would be cheated out of it. So he struck up a deal, all the speckled and spotted lambs & goats would be his, all the others, Labans. Then Jacob carved branches, exposing the white beneath the bark and placed them in front of the watering hole whenever the best sheep & goats were drinking and mating there. Jacob become rich because his flock prospered!

As Kris says, "this was not a lesson in agriculture, God was demonstrating how we, His sheep, reproduce. The watering hole is a place of reflection. Gazing and meditating happens in that place. What we reflect on while we are eating and drinking at the watering hole of life is what we will reproduce." Proverbs 23:7 "For as a man thinks in his heart, so is he".

If I spend my time reflecting & meditating on my shortcomings and weaknesses, I will continue to reproduce them even though I may be wanting to do or be something different. As I look back, I find this to be true in my life and the lives of others. If I want something different, I must reflect and meditate on something different. Phillipians 4:8 says, "Whatever is true ..noble ..just ..pure ..of good report ....meditate on these things". I am created in His image, His DNA is running through my veins but more importantly I carry His heart. In and of myself, there is no good thing, but when I reflect on Him and His beauty, His character, His love, I see that He is forming it in me! (Romans 8:29). He formed me, He is making me as I gaze and meditate on His image.

Lord, I don't want to stand at the watering hole of life and reflect on myself or others because I want my life to be a reflection of You. So I choose to behold You and agree with what You see and what You say about me. I will (Psalms 37:4) Delight myself in the Lord and He will give me the desires of my heart". (Desire means "of sire", He becomes the father, the sire, of my relections & meditations and produces good things in me.) I also ask you to forgive me for the many times that I have chosen to look to other things and other ones and other ways to bring about "godly" things in my life. I cannot produce anything of You unless have I my eyes fixed on You! How deep, how wide, how high is your great love for me and I'm so grateful to You for revealing this truth to me today!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Out with Spring, in with Summer

Did you know that Spring is now gone and Summer has officially begun? I love Spring. After the cold and everything appearing lifeless, warmth and color springs forth! And I see things I haven't seen for awhile like Robins. It's as comforting as a visit from an old friend! Crocus and daffadils burst into view and we are off and running. There is a flurry of activity among nature and humans.

And now Summer is summoned. I didn't notice anything different. It was hotter last week than this. Pools, camping and boating all began nearly a month ago. I didn't even notice there was a moving from one season to another. Did you? And until we reach the next season, fall, we really won't "rate" this summer. We have to live it before we compare it.

In the natural, sometimes we can determine the season and the changing of the season, but what about the spirit? For two years now things have been changing in my life. Not only have I gotten older with more apparent aches & pains, but grandchildren have been born, and I and others have changed addresses. I've discovered a word that keeps popping up: transition. Webster defines it as passage from one place to another; change from one state or condition to another. Yep, that pretty much defines my life for the last 2 years. My mom went to be with her loving heavenly Bridegroom, we moved from our home of 25 years, we became grandparents again and again, we went to school (school of ministry) and our son & family moved 1300 miles away (and took those grandbabies with him)! And after all of that, I don't think the transition is over any time soon.

Sometimes you are aware change has occured (like winter to spring) and sometimes it just happens and you catch up later (spring to summer). In the change, it is essential that you keep moving with it. How silly it would be to go outdoors with hat and mittens in the summer! And how dangerous it would be to go outdoors in the snowy winter with shorts and flipflops.

At this point in my life I have one thing on my heart, to be and do whatever His heart is doing! I want to be in whatever season my loving Father says it is for me. You see if winter comes too soon, we lose things and if spring shows up before winter is over we lose things. It's fruitful and purposeful if you are in the right season at the right time!

So Lord, may I be transitioning at the same pace as You and in the same season as You. I don't want to linger in the past or jump ahead of You. And whatever season it is may I be fruitful and find purpose!!

Monday, June 16, 2008

School of Ministry - Church History

My hubby and I have one more week and we will complete the first year of the school of ministry at our church. It has been an awesome year and we have been so awed by seeing more clearly the plan of our Father, Jesus our Redeemer and Holy Spirit. For several weeks, we have been studying Church History. Now I'm not at all a history buff and thought I'd be lost and perhaps bored in the class but it has been anything but!

The pastor who is teaching this module, declared the first night that he was teaching church history from the viewpoint of restoration. That he would show us the plan of God to restore all things unto Himself through Christ and the creation of the church. Class has been so interesting and after seeing each place where the Lord was awakening something that was lost, I saw the great persecution that resulted from the church. For instance, after the dark ages and all things the apostles walked in were completely lost, Martin Luther who was trying to make himself right but living a life of despair realizing that he never could, had gone off to a monastery and began to study the book of Romans. For the first time, he saw "the just shall live by faith" (Rms 1:17). Father was restoring a relationship by believing and not by keeping laws. He shared this new discovery and he was mocked, berated and eventually excommunicated from the church. He paid a great price for us to live in this great truth. There were many men & women who saw what was lost and when they proclaimed the truth, they were reviled. Included in this was the Azuza Street Revival. It awakeded the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, Pentecost. Again, they were mocked, berated and put out of fellowship. I began to think about the awakening that is taking place today in Florida. Is it possible for the Lord to be restoring again? Restoring signs, wonders and miracles.

I don't want to be one of those who rejects what the Father is trying to restore. I know he uses humans, and there will always be a part of flesh in it, but because we are made in His image, there will be a part of Him in it too! I am more determined to look for Him in all things. To see the face of my Father, to hear the voice of my Father, to be touched by the hand of my Father and to experience the heart of my Father.

Because of this class, I hope my heart will be awakened. Awakened to our human tendency to be unaccepting of things we don't fully understand. Awakened to our bend to negate rather than restore. Awakened to my narrowmindedness instead of wholeheartedness. Father, I am so grateful for those who paid the utmost price for the truth I walk in today. Because I believe more in Your ability to keep me, "To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy..." (Jude 24) than the enemies power to deceive me, I ask You to awaken me. Awaken me to anything that causes me to slumber. I give You permission to disburb me to awaken me!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Ahhhhh, a rest!!

As I previously wrote, I was watching Rick Pino leading worship at the Florida Outpouring and he sang a little diddy "We have the best Dad in the whole world"! Well, my 'Dad" outdid Himself again this weekend. He gave my hubby and I some much needed R&R with incredible friends of ours. God didn't just give us great friends, but great friends with an incredible cabin hidden high up in the mountains. No TV, no phones, gorgeous scenery, and sounds of nature.

There are so many reasons this couple we spent the weekend with are incredible and it's not because the have a cabin. It's because they have hearts like "Dads". They express their love for us, they get smiles on their faces when we can spend time together. They share "secrets" of their hearts. and want to know the secrets of our hearts. We are at similar stages in our lives, a "little" older, but wanting to be 'teenagers' in the Spirit! We are all learning new things about the King and His Kingdom and whenever we're together, it takes us hours to share it all with each other! This weekend was one of those times. We shared stories, laughed, cried, ate, walked, napped, ate again, shared the Word, worshipped, and ate again! The food and fellowship filled us up in more ways than one! We came into Rest! The Lord is Rest! We rested in the Lord! Our bodies came to rest, our spirits came to rest, our minds came to peace and rest!

It's true that we rested from our work, our daily labors, but the real reason we found such a wonderful rest is our hearts and minds were placed on 'Dad'. In Psalms 62:5 David says, Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him.

Whenever you are in a weary place, you can find rest if you bring your soul (mind, will and emotions) to God. He alone brings all things into rest because He is rest. You can be at rest too. In the tabernacle in the wilderness, God Presence, His Glory, the place of rest was found between the cherabim over the Mercy Seat. Jesus is the Mercy Seat of God, the Presence, Glory and rest of God. When we receive Christ, we literally sit in the Mercy seat, the Presence, Glory and rest of God for we are hidden in Christ. (Colossians 3:3)

Thanks, 'Dad', for the great rest. You're the best 'Dad' in the whole world!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

How do you put a puzzle together?

I was meditating on the word this morning thinking about the vastness of God. Recently I purchased a new journal, The Gold that Washed Ashore by Dean & Dutch Sheets. I love it because it causes me to stop and think and then gives me space to write what I'm thinking. There were a few statements today that I underlined, circled and put exclamation points after. One is ..His love is what keeps us for all our days! It's not up to me, it's Him who keeps me. Another is ...You can't sail on the wind of yesterday or tomorrow, only today's. I can stop thinking about shoulda, woulda, coulda cause it won't make a difference and worrying isn't going to get me anywhere either, so I hoist my sail and wait for His wind!

Dutch was sharing a clip from one of his books talking about when the Jews returned to Jerusalem after the Babylonian captivity. Because of the opposition of neighbors, they stopped working on the temple. It had been 16 years since they laid their hands to repair/restore it. The Lord sent 2 prophets, Haggai and Zechariah, who told them the reason for their lack of blessing and provision was because they had abandoned God's project for their own. (Haggai 1:1-11) I circled the word they. How many times do we blame God, questioning where His blessing went, or the devil for stopping us when all the time we abandon what the Lord instructed us to do? Dutch finishes with the statement "Our redemptive and restorative God never loses! The only question is always: Will we cooperate with Him?

My mind then shifted to recently when I was helping my 3 year granddaughter put a 24 piece puzzle together. It was the first time we had put a puzzle of this level together. I have always put a puzzle together by sorting out all the pieces and then putting all the outside pieces together first. I was trying to do this with her and she excitedly choose the "Tigger" piece first. Then found another piece of "Tigger" and was randomly looking at things she recognized and then adding to it. To my amazement, she put it together easily. Of course as 3 year olds always do, when she had finished she cried out, "AGAIN". So, this time I tried to show her the "right or easy" way to put it together by identifying the outside pieces and putting them together first. She wasn't buying it! Again, she found pieces of Tigger, Pooh or Piglet and gleefully added piece by piece.

Being a firstborn, I find that I'm very administrative. I can administer lots of things pretty easily and tell everyone else what to do and how. It dawned on me that perhaps I build walls around everyday life to get perspective and contain it. Maybe I start from the outside in because then I am sure I've got it all under control. The operative word in these statements is "I". I so want it to be Him! When I start with Him, His word, His heart, and His desires it gives me the freedom to follow, to come along beside and be at His pace "doing whatever He is doing". This is the way I want it. So Lord, show me where I am walled off or in, controlling rather than cooperating, missing you rather than communing with you. I want to abandon my works and walk every moment of every day in connection with you! Lord, hand me the pieces of life, however they fit together, in the right order and my destiny will be fulfilled! (And I am sure that God who began the good work within you will keep right on helping you grow in his grace until his task within you is finally finished (the puzzle of my life is put together) on that day when Jesus Christ returns. Philippians 1:6 Living translation)

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Who's your Daddy?

I was watching Todd Bentley and the outpouring in Lakeland, Fl the other night and Rick Pino was leading the worship. I love his music but never saw him before. Wow! If there were any "religious" people left who were still having a problem with Todd and his tattoos, Rick would have pushed them over the edge. He is wild and crazy but I don't believe intimidated in any way. He began to sing with great joy, "We have the best dad in the whole world, in the whole world". It was awesome! People where jumping and laughing and really into it.

This morning I started to think about that. Ever see little boys banter about their dad being the best? My dad's the best because... If you watch closely, you'll see confidence. When that young boy reallllly believes his dad is the best, it will give him security and confidence. The sad fact is that today, too many young boys don't have this kind of perception of their fathers. And honestly, most of us didn't believe or experience that our dad's were the best either.

The truth is that you are the child of another dad. Your Dad, heavenly "Papa", IS the best. He is perfect in all His ways. But we've been tricked by the father of lies. He has us blaming our "Dad" for everything wrong that happened to us. Believing that our "Dad" didn't care about us. LIES! The very fact that He came near and called us to Himself proves that He loves and cares for us. If a child was attacked and harmed, and then his dad rushed in to hug him and be with and care for him, the child wouldn't say "get away, you don't care or you wouldn't have let this happen to me". No! He would fall into the secure arms of his father, find rest and be comforted.

The truth is my "Daddy's" arms is the only secure place on earth. He IS the best "Dad" in the whole world and He is my dad. I am confident that He is will always be with me. I have all the strength I need because I have His strength. He is jealous for me and will deal with those who mean to do me harm.

So with Fathers Day approaching I ask in your preparations for dads, husbands, etc that you consider your own ideas of your "Dad". Do you believe He is the best and does that give you great confidence and security? If not, I pray for the Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation that you may know Him better (Eph 1:17).

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Taking a leap!

I can't believe I'm doing this! I'm standing at the edge and I'm going to jump in. Into the world of blogging. I don't fully know why but I feel an urge to join the ranks and what I hope to experience I'm not sure. But one thing I am sure of, if God is in it, I want to be in it too.

I know that God is moving and he's not doing the same old same old. So I'm not going to experience Him in new ways unless I move too. I've had the privilege of living in relationship with some incredible young people in the last several years. They are full of life, and always looking for Kingdom adventure. Two years ago, the Lord brought an amazing young couple into our lives, Wes & Laura. I knew Laura for a year or so prior to that and I was so amazed at her tender heart toward the One who loved her, her Bridegroom King. She told me about a book that helped her see Jesus more clearly than she ever had. The book was entitled The Bride, by Rhonda Calhoun. I devoured the book and came away experiencing Father, Son & Holy Spirit like never before. I had a paradigm shift, a shift in my thinking, and it shifted who I am.

In setting up my blog I was given the opportunity to write about me. I had to stop and think, what could I say? I am the Fathers' obsession. As Misty Edwards, one of my favorite worship leaders, sings "God is a lover looking for a lover so He fashioned me". Every object, every person has a value. The value depends on the creator and how much someone is willing to pay for it. My creator is The Creator of the universe. The One who put the stars and the sun and the moon in place. He created the heavens, seas, mountains and every living creature. He is The Greatest of all creators and He fashioned me. Secondly, He laid down His life that I would be brought near and have unbroken relationship with Him. No greater price has been paid for any object. He rescued me from darkness and despair and chosen me to be His bride. And I have chosen to give my life to the One who has given His life first for me. Amazing Love. Whatever He desires, I want to fulfill it, whatever he delights in, I want to do it. He came after me and forever I will be ...after His heart!