A Moment of Candor

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My heart is so full this morning, it’s hard for me to settle into my post. Our Pastor started a series on Eternity yesterday, and thoughts began exploding within me.

First of all, I was drawn back to the passages within Isaiah which speak of the greatness of God. When you have been in ministry for awhile, it’s easy to acknowledge God’s magnificence, but not really meditate on it. Your concentration is on His greatness, but also on your place in His plan and what you need to be doing.

Today is different. Today I stand in awe of His greatness – and the realization of our smallness in the big scheme of things. When you contemplate eternity, you realize how truly small on the timeline is our lifetime. Even if we live 100 prosperous and prolific years, we are less than a speck on eternity.

When you contemplate this, His tremendous love for us and desire to fellowship with us is even more amazing. What an awesome God and Father we have. Our minds can’t comprehend His vastness or His love. Truly amazing.

Who has measured the waters in the hollow of His hand, and marked off the heavens by the span, and calculated the dust of the earth by the measure, and weighed the mountains in the balance, and the hills in a pair of scales?

Who has directed the Spirit of the Lord, or as His counselor informed Him? With whom did He consult and who gave Him understanding? And who taught Him in the path of knowledge and informed Him in the way of understanding?

Behold the nations are like a drop from a bucket, and are regarded as a speck of dust on the scales.       Isaiah 40:12-15

There is something else which rushes into my mind also, and that is pity for those who don’t know Him.

  • I feel such sorrow for the many who are suffering  in the world and don’t know about the Savior and their opportunity  to know Him.
  • I feel sorrow for the foolish “intellectuals” who want to prove everything by scientific method, and yet defy all science in order to prove that everything “just happened.” That some “big bang” created all of the order we see, when all of science proves that order never comes from “big bangs” – only disorder does.
  • I feel sorrow for the people who think that their moment of celebrity and prosperity is all that there is, when their lives are but a speck, and none of what they are seeking matters in the long run.
  • I feel sorrow for Christians who believe in Jesus and yet deny Him by their actions.
  • I feel sorrow for Christians who believe in Jesus, but are too busy with other things to let Him matter very much.

Yet in all of this, I feel thankfulness to my awesome Father God that He will make Himself known to any who want to know the truth. I know that on the horizon is a Great Awakening which will be revealed to the world.

I also know that many who don’t believe now will be drawn to the truth and to His kingdom when they see the signs and wonders which will be displayed in days ahead.

He will show Himself strong to those whose hearts are sincere and willing to listen to Him.

He is an Awesome God.

The Power of Unity, Part 1

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Guest Post by Mickey Estes

[ Note: A few years ago, my husband was led by God to start a Pastors’ Prayer Meeting in the area where we lived. He spent a lot of time locating church leaders in the several counties around, and he began the bi-weekly meetings. During that season, the Lord gave him many words about the significance of leaders coming together for God’s purposes. The next few blog posts grew out of those words.

I am sharing them again since these same concepts are so important for this present time. This word is important not only for leaders, but for all of those in the Body of Christ who truly want to see God’s plans unfold in the earth today.]

Recently, the Lord has been speaking to me concerning the body of Christ. There are so many divisions; so many walls. There are denominational walls, racial walls, gender walls, and cultural walls. It’s as if His body is divided into many pieces with no connections, and it grieves Him.

Why is this so? Why have we allowed Satan to divide us? God has some answers for us.

We are all believing for a great awakening, and there are some keys to our preparation for it. One of those keys is humility.Continue reading →

Do You Suffer From Frozen Words?

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I can hear you now. Frozen Words. What a strange concept! What on earth is she talking about?

I have to admit it’s an unusual way of saying what I have to say today, but its origin is very sound. Its origin is none other than the Bible.

So I’ll produce a little background. A few years ago as I was studying the Bible and reading along with no particular direction in mind, some verses leapt off the page at me. You know what I mean. Verses which had never meant that much to me suddenly took on a WOW status.

Psalm 147:15-20

He sends forth His command to the earth; His Word runs very swiftly. He gives snow like wool; He scatters the frost like ashes. He casts forth His ice as fragments; Who can stand before His cold?

He sends forth His Word and melts them; He causes His wind to blow and His waters to flow. He declares His Word to Jacob. His statutes and His ordinances to Israel. He has not dealt thus with any nation. And as for His ordinances, they have not known them…Praise the Lord!

I stopped right there, and had to read and reread them. The more I did, the more the meaning became clear, and the more their meaning became significant for learning about God’s Kingdom.

These verses talk about two different “speakings” from God. The first is the speaking which sends His Word to the earth, but it’s frozen. It’s locked up, so that it’s hard to understand. “Who can stand before this cold?”

Then comes that wonderful second speaking. The Word is sent in such a way that the snow is melted and waters flow. This time there is a revealing to the children of God. This time the Words are understood and like refreshing waters they bring life and understanding to God’s people.

In the New Testament, we are introduced to two kinds of Word. The Logos, which is all of the Word of God and the Rhema, which is the Word which is spoken to us – personally. It’s revelation, or the truth within the truth.

That’s what these two speakings are referring to. The logos and the rhema. One is the general word for all to see, and the other is when that general word is melted into your heart and revealed to you.

What a beautiful image. The frozen word becoming life giving water as it becomes clear to you that God Himself is speaking that Word to you personally.

That concept of the frozen versus the melted – the ice versus the water, permeates every aspect of our walk with the Lord.

There are many people in our world today who know that the Bible speaks of Jesus dying on the cross for our sins. Yet that Word means nothing to them because it’s frozen. They don’t believe it or receive it.

But many of those same people will one day have that word speak to them again, and their lives will be changed. No longer will they see them as rigid words of someone else’s doctrine. They will see them as the Truth, and they will find those words speaking to themselves personally. From that moment, those people will never be the same.

Now let’s take a look at ourselves. God’s plan is so vast and His purpose so deep that none of us – not one – has received all of the revelation, the melted word, that He wants to pour upon our lives. So as we continue to read and study God’s Word, more and more of the Truth will be revealed to us.

Is there a certain area of your life which needs God’s special Word to you? Are you hurting because of problems in your family? Are you suffering from financial lack? Are you or a loved one sick? Are you crying out for a revival in our world?

Every area of our lives has a Word from God which applies to that. He wants us healed, whole, provided for, and spending our time helping to advance His Kingdom. Yet until we are able to hear Him speaking to those needs, we won’t have the faith we need to receive our answers from Him.

So what do we do? We find those words which apply to us at the moment. We then read them and reread them. We mutter them to ourselves, and allow the Truth to penetrate our spirits. As we continue, something amazing happens. God speaks those words to us in a way that we know they are true. No longer are they words on a page, they are now Words spoken to us personally.

Oh, that beautiful moment. We see it’s for us! We see it’s real and it’s personal! We are drenched in the reality that not only does God love us, but He wants the best for us.

Our wonderful Creator has turned the ice and snow into the melted Word of God – penetrating our innermost parts.

A beautiful moment indeed.

Forever Upward!

Suellen Estes150

 

 

P.S. If you would like a compilation of some Covenant Scriptures, addressing many areas of your life, you may download them Here.

 

 

 

Faith Pursues

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If you’ve heard me teach for very long, you have heard me talk about “the woman with the issue of blood.” She’s one of my favorite people in the Bible, and an incredible inspiration to many.

In Mark 5:25-34 we catch her story. Here she is – a very sick lady. So sick, in fact that she has been going to every specialist she can find, and she has spent all of her money. For her to go to that much trouble, she must have been in great pain.

But she heard…

What did she hear? She heard about Jesus and how He had been healing people who were sick. And the amazing thought came into her mind that maybe – just maybe – He could heal her also.

So she went to where the crowds were gathered and observed His power over sickness and disease. She probably heard others talking about their healings, and she increased in assurance that this time would be different.

The day finally came, and this special lady was going to act.

Can you imagine how nervous she might have been? She was not even supposed to be out in public with her ailment, so her boldness put herself at great risk of punishment. And then think about the embarrassment involved. All of those people would see her erratic behavior… And what if it didn’t work?

All of those thoughts must have roared through her head as she pushed forward to make her claim. Yet she would not be denied the blessing she had come to believe was hers. This woman was determined.

So she pursued, and we know the outcome. Her healing came – not because Jesus had chosen to give it (He didn’t even see her there), but because she reached out with faith and courage.

“Who touched me?” He said – a question which confused His disciples. How could He ask that when the crowd was heavy and many were touching Him?

This was different. Someone had touched Him in a way so that he felt power leaving His body. Though He didn’t see her, Jesus could feel the anointing being transmitted to her. Her faith had pursued the healing available through Jesus, and this faith had appropriated that healing for her.

Okay, so here we are in the present day, and I think that this message should resonate with us now. There are many problems we encounter. Sickness, financial lack, and problems with families.

Perhaps we have gone to every professional and we have tried everything they have recommended.  Perhaps we have even spent all that we had in order to find the answer. Yet the problem is still raging – with no solution in sight.

Yet as we think  about Jesus, read God’s Word and pray, we begin to focus on a different kind of solution – a heavenly one. God is still working miracles – in the 21st century. He is healing supernaturally, restoring broken lives, and restoring broken families. He is also making a way for provision when there seems to be no way for it to come.

When I find myself facing difficult situations, this woman and her tenacity stir me to take action. I pray and read passages of Scripture or other books to elevate my faith. I have seen many miracles in my own life, and I expect to see many more.

And I know that there are times when you have to be bold as you go for your answers. You must pursue. You have to be determined to press through the crowd of casual believers and receive answers which seem impossible to many.

Then you’ll hear those words, “Who touched Me?” You’ll receive that power that only Jesus and His Holy Spirit can give.

Overcoming Faith

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In the last post, we saw how Jesus marveled at the centurion who was so full of faith. This man was a Roman, and had neither been trained in God’s Word nor an understanding of God’s power. Yet he heard about Jesus, and recognized the authority in which He walked. As a result, he was able to receive a miracle.

In the same chapter – Matthew 8 – we see a different story. This time, Jesus and His disciples were in a boat crossing the sea when a great storm arose. The winds were whirling around and the waves were tossing the thee vessel about. Jesus was sleeping soundly in the midst of the storm until His disciples awoke Him. “Save us, Lord, we are perishing,” they cried.

As Jesus woke up and rebuked the winds and the sea, the atmosphere became perfectly calm. Then He rebuked His disciples. “Why are you timid, you men of little faith?”

Stop and think about that. If you had been one of the disciples, how would you have reacted? Would you have been as the disciples, frightened and worried? That seems like a normal reaction, doesn’t it?

Yet if what they were doing was what He expected of them, why did Jesus rebuke them?

There is a level of faith which is far above anything that any of us has attained but which is available to those who seek Him. But it doesn’t come from seeking Him for the faith. It comes from seeking a deeper relationship with Him.Continue reading →

It Takes Faith

cross-106416_1280It takes faith.

It takes faith to live any life with even a modicum of satisfaction. To live a great life which honors God and brings Him glory, takes great faith. We have heard that over and over, yet often this is the very place where we need some work.

Okay, okay, we say. We know that. But how do we get more? And why does it seem to slip away so easily?

The answer to the latter question is simple. The world – the cosmos – the natural way of thinking is enmity against God. His Kingdom operates on such a different plane that we sometimes find it hard to think in Kingdom terms.

For instance, in the world, we say, “You have to see it to believe it.” In the Kingdom, the truth is that “You have to believe it to see it.”

The world says to grab hold of everything you can and hold on to it. God’s Kingdom says, “You have to give to receive.”Continue reading →

Living From the Inside Out

Lauren-leap2If you have been with me for awhile, you may remember my post concerning “Life’s Greatest Mystery.” Paul talked about it in Colossians 1:27, when he said it’s Christ in you which is the Hope of Glory.

From my perspective, that is a concept which we cannot over emphasize. In essence, it is the very heart of what Christianity is all about. it’s not about rules and regulations – as with other religions. It is about the cleansing we received as believers – through the blood of Jesus – and it’s about the fact that the Holy Spirit now lives within us. We are truly temples of the Living God – right here on earth.

Now as I say these things, I am quickly reminded of two misconceptions which always come up when we discuss these topics. The first misconception is that every human on earth is right now a temple of the Holy Spirit –  and that is not true. It is true that every human is created in the image of God, and as such, has the capability of becoming a temple of God’s Spirit, but first they have to be cleansed. They have to receive the forgiving, cleansing gift of Jesus and the price He paid. Then they can become temples of the Holy Spirit.Continue reading →

The Blessing Behind the Red Door

red-926741_640I heard a remarkable story recently, and I would like to share it with you. This red door may seem ordinary at first glance, but it represents the event I’m about to share – and it represents even more. It represents God’s guidance and His blessing. Read on, and you will see.

My husband and I have some friends who have walked closely with the Holy Spirit for many years, and their lives exemplify that in many ways. They are kind, generous, full of the Word and faith. And they are extraordinarily prosperous.

From their platform of giving, God has prospered them abundantly – just as the Word says He would. Having started with the opening of one single business many years ago, they now have a chain of properties scattered throughout several southern states – facilities which bring in quite a substantial harvest.

As we were sipping a cup of coffee and chatting recently, they began sharing how God’s hand had guided them throughout their business building process. They have many stories of remarkable guidance, and that day they shared one special one.

Roughly 30 years ago, when our friend – let’s call him Bill – was in the early stages of building his business, things were going well. His business was growing and prospering, and he had seen God’s guidance as he expanded to several locations.Continue reading →

Looking For Hidden Treasure

red-tail hawk-600Have you ever been on a treasure hunt? It’s a fun adventure.

One year when our son was in elementary school, we organized a treasure hunt for his birthday party. My husband diligently surveyed our yard, making notes about possible landmarks. Then he created a map, which looked like an antique rendition of a pirate’s map, including the many markers which could lead to the treasure. (A chest full of candy and surprises which would interest boys of his age).

The map took them to the Maple tree and then 25 paces to the right where they would find the rock with a red line on it. Then the directions would lead them to turn right and take 19 paces to find the Rose bush, etc., etc. Finally, of course, the directions would lead them to the place where the treasure was hidden.

It was great fun seeing the boys run and jump around the yard, yelling with glee when they found a benchmark… And when they found the treasure, the effort was worth it!

I had a dream recently which reminded me of this moment, though in some ways it was quite different. I saw a bunch of us entering an old barn which was covered with dust and decay. We went in as a group, knowing that we were on a mission to accomplish something.Continue reading →

Do People Trust You?

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This is a Guest Post from http://theSoar.net.

Have you heard the story about the bicyclist who came to a small town to put on his dare-devil show? There hadn’t been mush excitement around for awhile, so the townspeople were thrilled as they gathered for the exhibition. They gazed toward the sky as the cyclist stretched a wire across the intersection, attaching it to the two tallest buildings in town. Then as he energetically scurried down, he addressed the crowd in his best carnival voice.

“How many of you people think that I can ride my bicycle on this wire across the intersection?”

Yeah’s and yea’s filled the air.

“Who will come and ride on my shoulders?”

Silence. Nobody even moved until one tiny boy came running forward. “I will.”

He was the only one who trusted the man’s word.

This story illustrates the truth about the word Trust. Many people can be cheering you on – in your ministry or your business. But do they really trust you?Continue reading →