Do You Know Him?

Lately, the thing foremost in my mind has been the area of being in relationship with the Lord.

Many believers, if asked, will proclaim emphatically that they love the Lord and have a relationship with Him.  They may even add some catch phrase about being too blessed to be stressed or how able God is to do this or that but not only do they not necessarily believe it, all too often, these same believers are just as stressed and uncertain about life than one who admits they don’t know God.  These are Christians who say on one hand that they love and know the Father but  will also admit to not knowing if He still speaks at all, let alone whether or not He speaks to them.

With anyone else, we would never say we are close and have an intimate relationship with someone we spend virtually no time with.  That would be very strange.  People do this with God all the time though and think nothing of it. We get that to be in relationship with other human beings, certain factors must be in place but somewhere along the lines, when it comes to God, most think church attendance and reading the Bible in a year equate to a relationship.

I feel strongly that there are people who are truly hungry for something real with the Lord.  People who are tired of dealing with things they don’t have to.  They see verses that say things like, “Be anxious for nothing”, but have no idea how to actually be anxious for nothing.  They see that Jesus said to take his yoke and burden because his is easy and light but they just don’t know how to let go of their own and take his.  Or perhaps, they have come in contact with someone who has attained something with the Lord that they want.  Perhaps it is seeing the relationship others have with Him that makes them say, “I want that!”  I have been asking the Lord how I can help.

I see so many Christians, wandering about life as if they are orphans, being swayed and tossed by whatever comes their way in life and it breaks my heart.  I can only imagine how God feels.  He never wanted this for His children.  If He said He has not given us a spirit of fear, you’d best believe, He hasn’t.

There’s nothing like a real bonafide relationship with the Creator of the universe.  In the beginning, it takes some discipline to remember to acknowledge that He is ever present, always waiting to speak with us as if we are the only person alive, but the outcome of it all is nothing short of astounding. I love how I can be going on about my day and God interjects what I’m doing and speaks to me.  I love how, when I start to drift away, focusing on the newest pain this pregnancy presents me with, He whispers to me, “What are you looking at?”, and brings me back to Him.  I love how, I can go places and see people and He gives me messages for them when I was doing something completely different.  I love how, in the midst of seeing everyone around me in fear and even terror, He gives me a spot right on His lap and has me look at situations and see them as He sees them.  I love hearing His laughter and jokes about various situations that happen throughout my day.  I love how He has and is answering my prayer to become more real to me than anyone or anything I see or experience in front of me.

Because of all this and so much more, I trust Him. I truly trust Him and take Him at His word.  When I see promises in the Bible, I get super excited because I know it’s for me.

So, in asking the Lord how I can help, one idea came to mind that I am putting into practice right away.  I plan to do a one on one mentorship sort of thing over the next few weeks with one or two people.  Once I see how that goes, I will come back with what I have learned and have a more concrete idea on what I can do to help people in my sphere of influence to come to know the Lord in a more intimate way.

In the meantime, it is my prayer that if you have identified at all with not really having a relationship with Him, you won’t stay there and settle for that.  There’s so much more available for those of us who are in Christ.  Let’s get all that has been put here for us to attain.  He’s right there with you, eager to share so much with you, engage and enjoy Him.

Having Peace During Election Season

While so many I know are so distraught over the upcoming elections, I am feeling so enormously blessed and at peace.  At the beginning of all this, before all the candidates were whittled down to the two, I asked the Lord who He ordained to be our next president (see Romans 13:1).  I got an immediate response and just waited to see if that particular individual would remain.  They have, so I voted towards that end and am fine with trusting the Lord with this situation.

Through all of what has occurred, I feel more secure in Him than ever before because I know that neither candidate is my source, God is, and since God doesn’t change, I don’t have to either.  I can keep right on trusting and believing God.  I don’t have to panic in fear of who might win and what harm could be done as a result.  I have options here.  I can continue to trust in the Lord with all my heart, knowing that He works all things together for my good because I am most definitely, head over heels in love with Him, and am called according to His purpose. Jesus told me to take his yoke upon me and that I would find rest therein, so, I’m taking it!  He said to be anxious for nothing. There is literally nothing I have to be anxious for, and I am choosing to believe him.

I can’t help but get ridiculously excited about God and all that He has afforded us as believers.  I feel like, more than ever, I am taking Him at His word and truly believing it.  The freedom of living this way is so amazing it seems illegal!!  I am loving how when anxiety tries to creep in, it feels so foreign that I immediately turn inward to my Heavenly Father to get that mess off of me.

I pray this peace for all of you as well.  May any of you who struggle with fear and anxiety, come into the awareness of all you have in Him.  May it forever change you and make you more and more like Jesus. I pray that you remember that you are in constant union with your Source and that you take full advantage of that fact, believing fully in the One who loves and knows you better than anyone ever could.

Who Do You Trust?

I have so much swirling in my head.  There are so many things I am grateful for, that when I dwell on them, I’m about ready to burst with joy. I feel like I’m enjoying something kind of forbidden, by the world’s standards anyway.  I remember this old saying that goes something like, “Don’t be so heavenly minded that you’re no earthly good.”  I admit that I’ve heard that a few times in my life.  I’ve even been accused of not taking things in life seriously enough, as if worrying actually helps and is productive.  Here’s what Colossians 3:2 says, Think about the things of Heaven, not the things of earth. See, God has something different to say about our earthly “wisdom”, 1 Cor. 3:19 says the wisdom of this world is foolishness to God.  In Philippians 4:8, it says that we should fix our minds on what is true, honorable, right, pure, lovely and admirable. It says to think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.

The question becomes, who are you going to trust, believe and go with?  I choose God, hands down.  Considering my problems and things gone wrong in my life or in the world at large, just doesn’t do it for me.  I love that I can go to the Problem Solver, the One who is never without strategies, answers and options for me to consider and walk out.  I’m excited beyond measure to even have some of the “problems” I now have as I can’t wait to see what my Abba will do with them as I literally rest and trust in Him.

When my daughter and I revamped our herbal business, we prayed. One verse that is at the heart of how we have decided to move forward with our business is Romans 13:8- Owe nothing to anyone-except for your obligation to love one another.  So, no debt.  Not a penny. The “wisdom” of this world says, “it takes money to make money” and most businesses start with a loan of some sort in order to get going.  Since we see otherwise in the Word, and know real life examples of people who have chosen God’s way, we decided to do the same and it has been amazing.

We have a few small monthly expenses with our company. One night as I was going to bed, I remembered that our account balance was dangerously low and bills would be coming out soon.  As I lay in bed, I said, “Ok, Abba, the account is low and we have no orders.  You know what we need so I thank you for taking care of it. I’m going to sleep.” The next day we got an order from a stranger and two family members.  Philippians 4:6-7 says, “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”

Ha!! As I read what I just typed, I realize I straight up Philippians 4:6-7thd that “problem”.  (I know there is no 7thd, lol.)  I chose to not worry, I didn’t even start screaming to the masses, “Discount! Sale!”. I simply talked to my Abba about it, thanked Him in advance for working it out, and you can’t tell me I didn’t have peace, I went straight to sleep, haha!!

I love that we truly do have options when it comes to where we put our faith/trust.  I have practiced worrying and it was never fun.  In fact, every time an issue was worked out, it felt a bit silly to have worried so much to begin with.  After all, every single issue I have been faced with, has been taken care of, one way or another.  My odds are amazing, as 100% of what I’ve faced that made me think I’d just die, I lived right on through in the end.

So while I watch some of my friends on Facebook, posting in desperation about how they are so freaked out about our upcoming election, I’m smiling and thanking God for giving me insight on who He has ordained to be in office.  I’ve decided to go with that and rest.  Some of my friends have seemed to become straight toddlers, posting their, “Just unfriend me if you’re voting for X!” or “Anyone voting for X, explain why!”as if it is their business.  These dear ones, I am praying for.  I see past the childish behavior and see that they are worried and in fear of what may or may not happen a few whole weeks from now.  What a way to live.  My prayer is that every believer learns to truly trust in the Lord with all their heart.  He is faithful and so very trustworthy.  He has proven it time and time again.  We must believe Him.

Letter to My Brown Skinned Son

As I nursed my brown boy this morning, I took a peek at my Facebook news feed.  There was lots of fear and grief.  Fear and grief that I understand well but am no longer willing to participate in.  I remembered being a willing participant and what I wrote.  I asked a question that no one answered.  They only liked that I’d asked the question.  In that moment of looking through my newsfeed, the answer came to me and I started off writing this status update:

“Still finding my joy, strength, peace, security, love and identity in my Abba!! I will *not* live in fear. I refuse.

Last time this kind of tragedy occurred, I was pregnant with my brown skinned boy. I knew in my heart I carried a boy, and when Trayvon Martin’s murderer seemingly went free, I freaked. I remember crying out and I believe I posted on Facebook, “What will I tell my son?! What will I teach him?!” I’m different today. I don’t have all the answers, nor do I understand, but I have one answer. As God would have it, I have the answer I need most. As I see people I love grieve and freak out, I know what I will teach and tell my son.”

What will I teach/tell my son? The following and more as God reveals it to me…

Jeshua, I will teach you all I know about the wonders of our Creator.  Your first name Jermaine means, Bud, Sprout.  You are now that tiny bud, a bud that is indeed sprouting into a more beautiful being with each passing moment. You are chosen, a royal priesthood, a prince, a mighty man of valor, seated with Jesus in heavenly places. (1 Peter 2: 9, Judges 6: 12, Ephesians 2:6)  I see great things for you Son and I’m not the only one. I will hold fast to the prayers and prophecies over your life and teach you to do the same.  You will fully understand the meaning of all your names Jeshua Michael- God is salvation, Who is like God?

I will teach you the reality of  verses like Ephesians 6: 12, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”, and Proverbs 23:7 which states, “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he”,  1 John 4:4 says, “Greater is He that is in me, than he that is in the world…”.  In fact, together, we will delve deeper into the life of John.  See, John thought himself to be untouchable.  They tried to kill him but it didn’t work.  In the end, he was exiled to an island where he spent the rest of his days.  He thought himself untouchable, and he was… Ephesians 3:20 says, “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, *according to his power that is at work within us*,” What power is at work in you my son?  I declare that you are not like the Christians in Rick Joyner’s book who, donned in all the armor and weaponry they needed to conquer their enemy, actually carried tiny demons on their backs, allowing the enemy to do as he pleased and even helped him accomplish his goals in their lives and the lives of other Christians.  That’s not you. That’s not your destiny.

I will teach you that what you focus on is what will expand in your life.  Choose God, little one.  Focus on Him and realize what it means to stand still and know that He is God.  Get all your strength, happiness, peace, love, joy unspeakable, identity, and security from, through, and in Him.  Spend time in His presence just being-not doing, not talking or asking, just being.  He will speak to you in those moments and you will get answers Son.  Answers that will carry you through moments like this one I’m experiencing right now where people around me are deeply grieved, fearful, downtrodden and I have a peace that is just… unearthly.  Nothing around me has changed for the better, yet, I type this out of a solid surety that our God just is, and that’s more than enough.  In fact, I am excited as I type this, I see so many exciting things for us all.  We are in for some wonderful things!! So, you don’t have to live in constant fear because your skin is brown.  That’s not your focus or destiny- to live in fear because, God is our source, our all… “He gives us the power to live, to move, and to be who we are. We are His children…” Acts 17:28