Drop The Rope

There are these people in the world… People who are hurting. Some are angry, and I don’t mean just a little mad. They are enraged on the inside, ready to erupt at a moments notice. Some are in despair. They don’t know what to do, where to turn, and surely, they don’t know how to heal. Some don’t even know they need to heal.

There are people, walking around seemingly fine. We see them every day. They smile at us and wish us well, but if you take just a second to really look, you’ll see that the smile doesn’t quite reach their eyes. Some people don’t bother with a mask of any sort. They are akin to the walking dead, blank, steady gaze and all.

There are people who walk around like burn victims with exposed wounds. Any little wind that blows by, any touch at all, not only stings furiously, but it seems to threaten their very existence. Some know and are well acquainted with their wounds, others have no idea about the gaping, oozing holes they carry all over their person.

One thing too many of these people seem to have in common is they carry a rope.

When one has pent up emotions of any sort, there is a need for release. For some, release comes easiest with the use of the rope they carry. They walk around, hauling it along, searching, waiting, hoping to get someone to take the other end of it so they can engage in a much needed release that comes from that old game, “Tug of War”.

One needn’t engage them directly. They only need to sense someone is against them in some way, it being true or not is of no consequence, they only need to feel it is so. Then, in their minds, it simply is so. They can, in good conscience, feeling fully justified, act.

The problem is, we are at one point or another, all playing this role. We all see things in part, and from a wide array of perspectives. We come from many different angles of thought and another thing we all seem to have in common is that we feel we are right. We leave no room for others with differing opinions to be right as well because- gasp, horror of horrors- that might very well make us, well, wrong. Some cannot stomach that.

So, perhaps, along your journey, you have reached a level of freedom that another has yet to obtain. It offends them and boom, they offer you the other end of the rope. (((rope is dropped at your feet))) Do you engage? Most of us do, at least initially.

See, many of us have a deep seated desire to be heard and understood. We don’t enjoy our words and ideas being twisted into something sinister when we know in our hearts that our intent is far from anything evil. We know where we are coming from and if we could just help them see… (((picks up the other end of the rope and pulls)))

The issue with this is that all too often, people are where they are, and your engaging in that tug of war with them will not only not change their view (or yours) but they don’t even want any change. They are simply here to be heard. They are here for the release that tug of war brings them. They don’t care about your viewpoint. They don’t want to know more or learn from you at all. Some are actually hellbent on misunderstanding you. For whatever reason, at this time in their lives, that is what they feel they need and frankly, it isn’t about you at all, you just happened to touch a tender wound they have open. This is where discernment is key. You don’t need to have every person understand you. It’s not for you to morph into Holy Spirit Jr, complete with cape and tights, to force them to see the light. Let them be where they are and pray for them. Don’t engage in fruitless battles that leave everyone just a little bit more damaged and settled further into only seeing from their limited perspective.

We all, at some point or another carry wounds. At times, we are the ones walking around with that heavy rope, offering it to anyone who’d take the other end and assist us in a much needed, albeit damaging exercise of release. We also play or have played the role of the one just wanting to blow off some steam with no intention of actually healing, but simply leaving behind collateral damage as we pick up our rope once again and tromp off to find someone else who is willing to engage in the exact same manner, smh.

My prayer is that with God’s help, we can begin to see. I pray that veils are lifted, blinders are removed, scales fall off eyes and we begin to see the real enemy clearly. Helpful hint- it’s not each other. We need to stop looking at issues from an “us versus them” perspective and when possible, shift to an “us versus the problem” standpoint. Just that alone could completely change how we “fight”. It could shift from fighting against one another, to fighting for one another. What could that look and be like?

My prayer is that we can stop and think, “If I am the one walking around with wounds, why don’t I seek healing for them instead of keeping and ignoring them and carrying this rope?” Perhaps instead of picking up the other end, we can refuse to engage in such destructive patterns of behavior, thereby refusing to be party to causing further damage to others and ourselves. We don’t have to engage in a tug of war.

My prayer is that we could each make a decision as many times as necessary, to just drop the rope.

Which Table Will You Choose?

I have been really going inward more, leaning in to the Lord’s arms and paying close attention to what is going on in the spirit. There’s so much activity. Sometimes it feels exciting, in a fun way, other times it just feels serious and grave.

A friend from high school posted something one day (on social media) that struck me and still does. He wrote something like, “Father please forgive me for the times I desired a seat at a table Jesus would have flipped over.” My goodness… If we’re honest, we have all been there at least once.

Part of what struck me about this was considering times where I have embodied this in my life. I thought I was justified and was totally fine with being seated at a table that Jesus might flip over as he did in the Temple where he said they used his Father’s house as a den of thieves.

Another thought hit me hard. I honestly believe many are about to find themselves happily seated at a table that God is going to flip over in a big way.

God gives wisdom freely to those who ask. There’s no need to meander about life with little to no direction or discernment. Again, these are freely given. All one has to do is ask.

I will be spending more time in prayer for us all. May none of us find ourselves happy to dine at a table that would make Jesus angry enough to flip it. Surely, that is not a table we should desire to sit and eat. I’d much rather sit at the table my Heavenly Father prepares for me. It’s far better.

Who’s Speaking?

This blog post comes in response to one of my dear readers, Selah Vita. Both Selah Vita and God have recently brought up the conundrum many of us find ourselves in when we “hear” something. We wonder, “Is it me? Is it God, or is it the devil?” I thought I’d share my thought process on this confusion, in hopes of helping someone.

The easiest one for me to knock out quickly is the enemy speaking. In John 10:10, Jesus said that the thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy. So, if what I am hearing goes along those lines in some way, or makes me feel guilt ridden, condemned or some other horrible emotion, that’s very likely not God and is most likely inspired by the enemy. Romans 8:1 says there is no therefore no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus. There’s so many verses that speak to the character of the enemy that once you have that knowledge, it isn’t so difficult to discern the tricks of the enemy.

The same is true for Abba. When you know His character, it’s easier to discern when He is the one speaking to you or even through you. One cliche that rings true is that God is good all the time. He truly is good. He is all, in all. He is good. He is love. He is peace. He is life. You get the picture. One habit I picked up several years back, is that I literally blame every good thing that happens on God. This one habit ends up having a ripple effect that is amazing. Something good happens, I give Him the credit for it which makes me more grateful, joyful, happy, etc. Then, it causes me to be on the lookout for more evidence of Him, which makes me more tuned into Him, which makes me see even more of Him, and on and on. He is literally all over the place, in all the details.

While away on vacation, we visited a Trader Joe’s store. A clerk with a gorgeously wild, red, curly mane gave my children a bag filled with lollipops and me a free reusable Florida bag. I blamed God. Like most children, I have 2 in particular, who are crazy about Trader Joe’s lollipops and I happen to be just as crazy about reusable bags. The man didn’t know this, but God does, and, that man offered himself to God (whether he knew it or not) to be used to love on us with things we enjoy while away. It’s like kisses and hugs from God, reminding us of His everlasting presence.

So again, I blame every good thing that happens on God. That gets me to the “suddenlies” that occur. When I am looking for something and suddenly envision where I last put it and find it. When I suddenly have a thought or idea that follows no logical thought pattern that I had going- it’s typically God. When I, a staunch believer in not just homeschooling, but unschooling, got a thought about a nearby trade school and my middle daughter, no question, that was God, lol. I even said to Him aloud, “Ok. I will check it out.” Only He could have orchestrated that and known that my girl, who has never attended school, would be excited to go, even if it’s only 2 hours a day.

Sometimes, there’s a feeling that goes along with Him speaking. There are times I hear Him and feel compelled to do or say something. Other times, I feel a sense of excitement, joy, or even negative emotions another person feels. This is the way He has me relate and open conversations with others at times. I have felt the impact of accidents I wasn’t involved in- not with the pain included, just the shock of it all and the knowledge of the vehicles involved, things like that. This has happened several times and each time, I would begin to pray in tongues and would eventually find out exactly who I was praying for and how they miraculously came through the accident unscathed. I like to call that, Holy Intel. There’s so much I could say!! God is so creative and exciting. He speaks in so many ways and uses literally anything. We have but to be tuned in.

The last one, “Is it just me?” can be easy at times and tricky at other times but because God is good, I trust Him to give me a good old stop sign if I am heading in the wrong direction. One such time was when my husband and I felt it was time to move from New Jersey, back down to Florida, where we married and started our family. We were so excited to head back down there, we prayed, and had it on our family vision board. We marveled at how often we saw Florida tags while driving along in New York and New Jersey. My husband put in for transfers to several locations in the state of Florida. We just knew it was time to go. We even packed some things in boxes in our garage as evidence of our faith to move back to Florida. Basically, God said, “Not yet.” Because of the connections my husband has and more, the move should have been super easy and smooth. We should have had the “problem” of having to choose which location we wanted to accept in Florida, but God closed every single door and you know what? We are eternally grateful. We needed to remain here and make the connections we now have which are so vitally important to us and even in the Kingdom of God. We may still head to Florida someday, but we are quite happy to be here at this time, because we know it’s where we belong. It’s where God wants us.

In this example, where it clearly was not God’s idea for us to move, we lost nothing. We operated out of faith and did many things that are very positive and hope building and more. I say that to say, don’t let fear of “Is it just me?” stop you from stepping out in faith. Move forward knowing God is with you and will help you. We learned a lot of things that God would use later, so even in getting it “wrong”, a lot of good came out of it.

There’s also times when it’s obvious that a thought is so not God. Thoughts that are selfish, rude, mean, etc. Again, there’s so much that can be said, but I don’t want to write too much here. As always, you can also simply ask the Lord to help you to better discern where thoughts are coming from. He is more than happy to help because as stated before, He is good!

Oh! Before I forget! To my dear Selah Vita, this is your year honey. I know the New Year has come and gone but this is a new beginning for you. I believe you have lots of surprises in store for you this year. Some things that you have thought about and wanted, and others that weren’t even on your radar, all coming your way, this year. I also believe this year you are receiving what I can only reference as a tune up to tune in, to Him. You will find that by the end of this year, you have less and less of an issue discerning exactly where thoughts, ideas and phrases are coming from. Write, Selah Vita! Write down those thoughts and dreams and visions you are getting. They all mean something. In fact, some of the guessing will be addressed and answered in dreams, so write these things down. You are building a log book of faith, lol. You will have all these instances and situations that you can look back on and see how very much our Abba loves and speaks to you and through you. Have fun with this and pass on what you learn!! You have so much to teach and offer others. Love you!

The Religious Spirit

Seven days before it came, the Lord gave me a dream, warning me that the religious spirit would be coming my way.  It came through someone I love dearly in the form of a bunch of theories, conspiracy theories.  I mostly listened and felt like my loved one was wrapped in an enormous web or one of those elaborate mazes that have the potential to drive one completely insane with all the twists and turns that lead to numerous dead ends.  Two things struck me during and after the conversation.  I kept having this thought, “Where is the relationship and encounter with God in all this?”, also, I felt sick to my stomach by the end of the conversation and well into the afternoon.

Once I’d had enough of the sick feeling, I went straight to God and said, “Abba, I know where I stand with you. I talk to you all day, everyday and you talk to me.  You tell me things about people that I have no way of knowing, so my relationship with you is not the issue here, but what is this feeling about?”  His reply was, two sentences, “Who do you believe, them or Me?” and, “I have put my Spirit in you so you have the ability to discern truth from lies.”  I told Him that without question, He is the one I believe and asked Him to take that nasty feeling away and give me something else in exchange for it as I had work to do, I was preparing to teach on identity at youth group.  I didn’t have time for that.  He took the feeling away and I had an amazing week.

As always, when something happens in my life, it is addressed at one of the prophetic meetings/events that I attend.  This time was no different.  The religious spirit was talked about over and over.  That was the spirit I was discerning when I felt sick to my stomach.

As I think about all the theories my loved one mentioned, wondering where God is in it all, wondering when the focal point shifts from theories and deceitful, hate filled humans to God and His love and peace, etc, I can’t help but think about my experiences.  The tangible love, the visions, dreams, miracles like seeing sound and operating outside of time as the world knows it, prophecies, visitations from Jesus, angels, Holy Spirit manifestations that cause everyone to be silent, even the babies in the room.  There’s so much!  As some guy who I don’t know the name of stated, “My experiences trump your theories.”  It’s too late.  I have an intimate relationship with my Abba and we are growing more and more intimate each day.  I pray that more get to the place of total intimacy with Him.  Then, the religious spirit won’t stand a chance.