Day 336: Tethered (December 2)

Today, I encourage you to take a moment and focus on your roots.  If we are certain that we are grounded in the Lord, then we are unafraid to live and move and breath in Him because we no longer fear falling away or being led astray.  It’s like being tethered to Him.  If we know that we are set in Him, then we can feel free to explore and know that He will hold us centered on Him and we will not lose sight of Him.

Are you tethered?

Have you spent time developing a solid bond with Abba, so that you can explore and not fear?

It’s important to know this…….

No temptation has seized you except what is common to man.  And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear.  But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.                  1 Corinthians 10:13

Tethered…..It says, He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear…..Do you believe that?

Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid.  The Lord, the Lord, is my strength and my song; He has become my salvation.  With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.               Isaiah 12:2-3

Tethered…..The Lord is my strength….I don’t have to be strong on my own…..Do you live that?

Lord, You have assigned me my portion, and my cup; You have made my lot secure.  The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance.  Psalm 16:5-6

Tethered…..He has made your lot secure…..No one can rob His promise from you……Do you trust that?

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.  Romans 8:38-39

Tethered…..Nothing can separate us from the love of God….Do you know that you know that?

 

 

Day 335: Winter (December 1)

I saw myself walking through the snow, trudged really.  The snow was whipping around me and it was cold.  Then I saw a very warm coat and scarf wrapped around me, and God spoke, “Even in the winter, I am there.”  With delight I saw that even when I walk through winter, He is my coat and scarf.

So often, when we walk through challenges we say, “I can’t feel You God. Are You there?”

I assure you friend, He is.  What I noted most about the above vision I had was this, He didn’t prevent me from walking through a necessary season, but He did provide me warmth, so I wouldn’t freeze.  Sometimes, it’s as simple as that.  Sometimes, we need to recognize that He is the One sustaining us.  The One protecting our very lives.

He is our coat and scarf in the winter.

I don’t know if that resonates with you, but for me it is a deep deep interaction with Him.

Today, if you are in the middle of a winter season, I encourage you to assess.  Look around until you find the ways He is sustaining you.  They may seem like small gestures, but aren’t those often the best?.

He is with you in every season of the soul.  He is faithful.

God, thank You for walking with me in every season.  As winter presses in on some, let them feel Your coat and scarf wrapped snuggly around them.  Help them to acknowledge Your provision and steadiness even when snow drifts can make it hard to see Your solid foundation.  Lord, bring relief.  Let the Son come out and melt away some snow so they can have the hope of a future once again.  You are the Way, so let them never lose sight of Your path.  You are the Truth, so let that Truth press in on them so they can feel it even when the winter has left their skin feeling numb.  Lord, light a fire inside their hearts.  In Jesus name, Amen.

I will surely gather all of you, O Jacob; I will surely bring together the remnant of Israel.  I will bring them together like sheep in a pen, like a flock in its pasture; the place will throng with people.  One who breaks open the way will go up before them; they will break through the gate and go out.  Their king will pass through before them, the Lord at their head.  Micah 2:12-13

 

Day 334: Isaiah 35 (Joy of the Redeemed) (November 30)

I recently happened upon this chapter in Isaiah, and I knew it was to be a guidepost for my family during 2019.  I also felt God wanted me to share it with you.

I feel Him showing me that some of you have walked out a lot of stretching and disappointment and He is sending out this chapter as a beckon of hope and light.  Life does not always need to be riddled with challenge and suffering.  There are to be seasons of harvest and rest.  We are to rest in the goodness of God.  At least, that’s what He keeps speaking to me……

As you read over this chapter, take it slow and let it soak into your heart and mind.  The devotional is simple today, but very purposeful.  Soaking in God’s word is of the utmost importance and we will begin today just that way.

The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom.  Like a crocus, it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy.  The glory of Lebanon will be given to it, the splendor of Carmel and Sharon; they will see the glory of the Lord, the splendor of our God.  Strengthen the feeble hands, steady the knees that give way; say to those with fearful hearts, “Be strong, do not fear; your God will come, He will come with vengeance; with divine retribution He will come to save you.  Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped.  Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the mute tongue shout for joy.  Water will gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert.  The burning sand will become a pool, the thirsty ground bubbling springs.  In the haunts where jackals once lay, grass and reeds and papyrus will grow.  And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness.  The unclean will not journey on it; it will be for those who walk in that Way; wicked fools will not go about on it.  No lion will be there, nor will any ferocious beast get up on it; they will not be found there.  But only the redeemed will walk there, and the ransomed of the Lord will return. They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.  Isaiah 35

 God, I believe I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.  I believe You are crowning this year with Your goodness.  I believe every promise You have spoken over me and my family.  I will trust You as I walk out Your goodness and I will not fear that trouble will come tomorrow.  You are my ever-present God.  You know all.  You have been in my past and You have walked in my future, so I will trust in You alone.  In Jesus name, Amen.

Day 333: Just One Mile (November 29)

As I have recently mentioned, I have been in a (hopefully short) season of dealing with some health issues.  As a result, I have been having to drastically alter my normal exercise routine.  This is a huge deal for me because for many years now, I have consistently run every week.  A few days ago, between procedures, I felt my body was ready to get a little exercise so I went out to my trusty treadmill and began a slow run.  I wasn’t able to run far when pain started happening, so I started to walk instead.  I increased the incline on the machine and slowed the tempo and felt Holy Spirit say to just walk for one mile.  As I continued, I began to feel better and better and when the mile was over I thought, “I think I can do one more.”  Immediately, Holy Spirit spoke a warning to me, “Just do the one.”  It was almost audible.  I quickly turned off the machine and headed in from the garage.

What I am learning through this process is, it’s not just about how I feel, it’s about what Holy Spirit guides me to do.  Based on feelings, I would be trying to run everyday still.  But Wisdom says, “Take a break and let Me guide you back into exercise.”

Wisdom says, “Trust Me with your body and I will make you well.”  Fear says, “Better get out and exercise or you’ll lose all the progress you’ve made.”

See the difference?

One is based on peace and the other is based on threat.

It is often much easier to discern between the two voices than we think.  Look for peace.  Look for a calm and gentle response and there you will find Wisdom.  Even when Wisdom’s voice is firm, it’s still wrapped in steadiness and peace.  Look for those markers.  Trust peace.  Search out Wisdom.  And take it just one mile at a time.

My son, if you accept My words and store up My commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding, and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.  For the Lord gives wisdom, and from His mouth come knowledge and understanding.  He holds victory in store for the upright, He is a shield to those whose walk is blameless, for He guards the course of the just and protects the way of His faithful ones.  Then you will understand what is right and just and fair- every good path.  For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul.  Discretion will protect you, and understanding will guard you.  Proverbs 2:1-11

Day 332: Holidays (November 28)

For so many, the holidays bring back a slew of memories that are not exactly positive.  For those people, I wanted to offer this devotional.

For many years I dreaded holidays with family.  Don’t get me wrong, I really love my family, but until I spent time with God walking through some childhood healing and allowing Him to establish my true value within, I was a hot mess.  Every year when Thanksgiving and Christmas would roll around, I would already be completely wrapped in insecurity.  I didn’t know how to function within my family unit.  I didn’t know where I fit.  I also didn’t really know who I was yet.  None of those things were their fault either.  But you know when a person is hurting, they often struggle most with the ones they know the best, family.

While living away from them all, I began to walk out healing and identity, then it was time to go home for Christmas.  A true test of all I had been learning and receiving over the previous years.

I remember talking with my husband about it and feeling nervous because I didn’t want to just fall into the same cycle I had lived out over and over again, year after year.  He said, “Just be who you are and don’t worry about anything else.”  So I did.

Every morning, I would wake up and spend time getting rooted in the Word, and then I would face the family.  Something amazing happened!  As I walked in my true identity right in front of them, the dynamic began to shift.  That year, my parents decided to pray over each one of us, as a part of their gift to us.  That was very much my language.  I grew excited.  Then when they began to pray over each one, I began to receive prophetic words for each and every person.  Instead of pretending I didn’t hear anything, I boldly spoke those out, and it was amazing!!!  This moment was of the utmost importance to me.  It was as if God had directed things that year so He could show my family a portion of my true self without me doing anything.  I just remained willing.

Ever since then, I have felt at ease around them all and the holidays have become full of joy and fun!

Friend, it’s not always others fault if you feel uncomfortable.  Sometimes it’s an indicator that you need healing.  Maybe, just maybe, the Father is showing you a place where He longs to bring healing and identity.  We must know who we are.  That’s not selfishness, it actually makes it easier to love and invest in others.  How can you value who others are when you don’t yet value yourself?  It all circles back around to those trusty verses………

Jesus said unto him, thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.  This is the first and great commandment.  And the second is like unto it, thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.  On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.   Matthew 22:37-40

 

Day 331: Breathe In, Breathe Out (November 27)

I was worshiping the other day, and I had the neatest vision.

I saw myself and I had wings outstretched upon my back. As I sang out God’s praises, I could see Him breathing into me as I took each breath between lines of the song.  It was amazing.  We repeatedly had this exchange back and forth.  I would release all my breath in praise and receive new breath straight from God.

I love how God loves our worship.  This is not the first time I have seen Him participate or respond to worship.  It’s so beautiful to know that we can have this exchange.

Worship is such a crucial key to our walk with Jesus.  I often wonder why many people withdraw from it.

Today, I challenge you to have a worship exchange with the Father.  Talk to Him about how you feel about worship.  Does it make you uncomfortable?  Then tell Him.  Do you love worship?  Tell Him.  Do you dislike openly worshiping in public?  Talk with Him about that.

It took years for me to become comfortable with public displays of affection.  Now, it’s much like breathing.  I love Him.  That has zero to do with anyone else.

Imagine it this way, if your spouse or loved one came into the room and you hadn’t seen them in a while would you sit quietly in your seat, or would you dash over and embrace them and kiss them and say, “I love you!!”  I know what I would do.  I wouldn’t be worried about anyone else in the room.  I would leap up and embrace them.  When Chris comes home at the end of the day, I make a beeline to him and get a hug and kiss.  It’s just what I do.  I don’t care if others see.

Why would I care if others see me worshiping and loving on Abba?

I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well.  Psalm 139:14

Praise the Lord.  Praise God in His sanctuary, praise Him in His mighty heavens.  Praise Him for His acts of power; praise Him for His surpassing greatness.  Praise Him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise Him with the harp and lyre, praise Him with tambourine and dancing, praise Him with the strings and flute, praise Him with the clash of cymbals, praise Him with resounding cymbals.  Let everything the has breath praise the Lord.  Psalm 150

Day 330: There’s a Wall Behind Me (November 26)

I’ve begun to see that there is a wall behind me.  Recently, when I was worshiping and spending time with God, He stirred my spirit and I began to fervently pray in tongues.  It was shocking and unexpected, but I felt the Spirit of God moving deep inside of me.  Then I felt and saw something I had never seen before.  I felt a wall standing strong behind me and as I prayed, I became more and more aware of it.  That wall was the bulwark of the Lord.

Bulwark:  A defensive wall.  A person, institution or principle that acts as a defense.  An extension of a ship’s sides above the level of the deck.

I could literally feel His protective nature come and strengthen me as I prayed out His heart, and do you know what He had me praying about?  America.  He is NOT done with our country.  He is NOT laying silent while the enemy ravages our country.  On the contrary, He is on the move.

In the past, many times when God would stir me to intercede with intensity, I would have an accompanying fear of my being attacked by the enemy as I stood so boldly.  But what God was showing me in that instance was, when I pray His heart, He stands as a defensive wall around me and protects me from the enemy.  I am chosen by Him to intercede this way.  I see that now.  So why wouldn’t He provide protection?  He is a good Father, remember?

When you are walking out the call of God on your life, and when you are responding to His move in your heart, He will protect you.  If troubles come, He will already be there.

He is our Bulwark.

Jehovah is my rock, and my bulwark, and my Deliverer, my God is my rock, I trust in Him; my shield, and a horn of my salvation, my high tower.  Psalm 18:2

Behold, I am going to send an angel before you to guard you along the way and to bring you into the place which I have prepared.  Exodus 23:20

Now I know that the Lord saves His anointed; He will answer him from His holy heaven with the saving strength of His right hand.  Some boast in chariots and some in horses, but we will boast in the name of the Lord, our God.  They have bowed down and fallen, but we have risen and stood upright.             Psalm 20:6-8

(A word on America:  Let’s not forget that we came to America, originally, so we could experience religious freedom.  It’s no surprise that Christianity is embroiled in a fight to continue walking out that freedom.  Also remember, we were established as “One nation, under God”.  Friend, the fight is not yet over.  America needs to be restored to its original identity.  ONE NATION, UNDER GOD.)