Revival Myths? Let’s Get Our Focus Right

While reading Normal Christianity by Jonathan Welton, Chapter 2, Revival Myths opened my eyes in marvelous ways. Every point was spot on but it was Myth #2 that grabbed me wholeheartedly, opening my eyes to a glorious revelation for my life.

Myth #2 -God will sovereignly move when He is ready.

Seeing God as relational and responsive is a major key to living as a Normal Christian. This is the difference between waiting for a sovereign distant God to finally fulfill His prophetic words, versus a relational God who comes upon hearts that are turned toward Him.

I remember going to conference after conference, crying out, waiting for some prophetic word to be fulfilled to give me the go-ahead to move out, to do something, to be something. Attending 2-3 conferences per year were the norm for me. I needed the impartation, the direction, and the prophetic word. So often, the underlying imparted focus was sovereignty, the supreme and ultimate power of God, His self-governing essence over the universe. In other words, God was going to move when He wanted to move and until then, we should consider waiting to get in His flow. Don’t move. Not yet. Wait for God to give the go-ahead. Listen to more prophetic words, more times of crying out, more waiting.

AwakeSo what then? What happens until that ultimate moment? Attend more conferences to get more impartation to discern greater focus. And the circle goes round and round, never-ending, never arriving. All of this seeking denied the simple reality of an awakening of grace in me to focus on Christ in me, now, at this moment directing my life to move each day in His Spirit. Now.

In previous times, I felt so out of the mix, sensing something lacking in me because I believed I needed someone or something to endorse God’s moving in the earth in order for me to do what God called me to do. Looking outside myself, I consistently sought to glean the next impartation or the next prophetic word.

I was waiting, always waiting. I needed some type of external impartation or prophetic word for God to speak and say, “Ok Debra, it’s time.”

Now, let me put in a small qualifier here. I believe there are God ordained times of preparation and waiting but these are seasons of intimacy and depth where Christ Jesus is revealed to us in Holy Spirit taking us from glory to glory in maturity in grace. They are not seasons where we are to be dependent on a current movement or ministry to pave the way. Jesus is the way; Holy Spirit leads me in Him in the way my life moves in Christ.

Some great excerpts from this book:

God is first relational, not first sovereign.

The heroes of the faith have interacted with God on the basis of relationship before sovereignty.

Smith Wigglesworth was known to say, “If God is not moving, I will move Him.” A statement like that may sound presumptuous or arrogant to those who have overemphasized the sovereignty of God. But seen correctly, Smith Wigglesworth was referring to the fact that the depth of his relationship with God would cause Him to respond and act because Smith had moved His heart.

This is incredible to me. This is probably why I kept thinking in my last blog that the time is now in Christ, enough waiting, just move.

Jeremiah 29:11In prophetically being motivated to look ahead, to wait, to pray, to seek, to enter into that perfect flow at that right moment, I lost focus of Christ in me, now. My process in life is the unfolding of the reality of Christ in me in Holy Spirit. The outflow of this expanding revelation moves me in process in my creative calling, glory to glory to glory. The unfolding of my creative calling does not magically or mystically happen in one day for me – it grows, evolves and moves each and every moment.

I realize that apart from Him, I can do nothing but in Him, each day is a new adventure. Old lies and myths are exposed to bring a greater sense of freedom.

I will admit that each time I write about something like this, I sense that I am only scratching the service, leaving out parts, skimming over others but I pray that you get the picture. The prophetic, apostolic and everyone else are being aligned into a revelation of Christ Jesus, away from the peripherals and into the center of who He is and the way He is constantly moving throughout the earth.

Our intimate relationship in Christ moves us right into God’s sovereign flow. In this place of intimacy,  I find myself living, moving and having my being in Christ. Each day is a day of glory for those in Christ Jesus.

DebraIn Christ,
Debra

I would love to speak at your conference, gathering, church or home group. Contact me here, on Facebook or on Twitter. Enjoy reading about Rivers of Eden and the Timeline of our Life!

Turn the Page – Better Yet, Close That Book

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There comes a time when you have to choose between turning the page or closing the book.” @WomenOfHistory

The time is now. It’s time. Close the book. There’s a new story waiting for us in a new season from God. Staying too long in this place? Reading the same stuff over and over and over? Can’t see the words on these old worn out pages? Don’t build a memorial to the good old days. Time to close the book. Start to explore a new story, a new adventure. Good bye to the past and all it’s taught us! It was great but there is a new journey ahead!

Old Book Flower

Ever feel like you’re reading the same story over and over, hoping it will change or hoping you can change it in time? It’s been so long it’s taken on a life of its own. Look closely, there’s grass growing there from staying in that same place for too long. Well, that’s a clear sign to close the book. Close it. Thank God for what has been learned and then start a new adventure. There’s a new story ahead.

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By Accident or Intelligent Design?

cross“By accident or by intelligent design?”

When I awoke out of sleep the other night, I heard this question resounding in my spirit. I love questions from God. He also loves questioning me. I am never too quick to answer or lean into my own wisdom. Nighttime is perfect for this. I am not quite awake yet with my own thoughts.

There are always layers to questions. They are not always quite what they appear to be. What does this one mean?

This question summoned me to come apart to spend time with Him. At first I tossed and turned. I started to get up and lay back down. I tossed and turned some more. Finally, I went into my office, began to pray and waited on God with a journal close by.

Do I believe that I was born and placed in time by accident or intelligent design? It makes a difference in how I live my life. I believe I was born into time for such a time as this. I believe in my salvation in Christ, my eternal life in Christ now.

Yet, if that is true, and it is, then why am I so out of sync with life at times and even with myself – my feelings, my desires, my promises? Why do words such as breakthrough and destiny flow from my lips even when I feel out of sync saying them for I know inside of me are fears of all kinds? Why do I feel as if I wander at times, randomly waiting for life to take hold of me and suddenly push me in the right direction of my promise or breakthrough?

As a human being, I can feel fragmented and separated from my authentic self. Who exactly is my authentic self? It’s quite simple and the older I get, the simpler it becomes. I look no further than He who lives His life in and through me.

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. (Galatians 2:20 NKJVS)

I am in Christ. His life is in me. I died and now live in resurrection power in Christ. Some days that plays out better than other days when life sends its challenges and I surely forget this. When that happens, I run back into truth to recapture the revelation of the finished work of the cross of Christ. I stand in that place as I remember and Christ re-members me in His truth.

Every time that life seems to pull me in many different directions to where I don’t even know myself, He is there, reminding me that I am whole in Him. Nothing overpowers me. He is my life. I have died in Christ to live in the purity of resurrection life. That is truth – a truth that is imparted to me over and over again. In the worst of situations, His grace is sufficient for me. In my weakness, He is strong.

Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection. (Romans 6:4-5 NKJVS)

Soaring EagleI am joined to Christ in the power of the cross and the power of the resurrection. That is the glory of intelligent design. I live in Christ. Nothing can separate me from that – not fear, not worry, not depression, not anxiety…not anything. I am not an accident randomly placed in time to wander amidst uncertainty and apprehension, separated from my authentic self, drowning in a false image that the world at large tries to shove down my throat. I am made by His intelligent design. The breath of God courses through my life.

I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well. My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. and in Your book they all were written, the days fashioned for me, when as yet there were none of them (Psalms 139:14-16 NKJVS)

How can anything separate me from the love of Christ? How can anything separate me from Christ in me, my union in Christ? It can’t but it does try to create an illusion or a fog that causes me to look outside myself at circumstances, situations or any life challenge.

Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:37-39 NKJVS)

I am not randomly moving in time, wandering, and wondering. My life is in Christ and in Christ there is grace to empower me to live as a child of God. Wandering through life, without rhyme or reason, is not my lifestyle. To randomly wander in life is to be separate from this truth. I am not here by accident. I am created by intelligent design, the God of the universe who sent His Son, Jesus Christ for me so that I may live life in Him through the power of Holy Spirit.

I will end with this. There is a pressure to have answers, tie up loose ends, get to the heart of the matter and provide a solution. So many people want a way out and it is simply not possible. Again, life is about process and every step along the way; it is in the journey that we discover the heart of God. This Christian life is all about relationship and we don’t take our cues from the world in how to walk this out and how to live our life. Our life is in Christ, not the world. There is so very much to say on this as time goes on.

Debra 2In Christ,
Debra

I would love to speak at your conference, gathering, church or home group. We arrange our own traveling expenses. Contact me here, on Facebook or on Twitter. Enjoy reading about Rivers of Eden and the Timeline of our Life!

When Words Jump Off The Page

SparkHave you ever been reading a book when suddenly you realize that you are so in sync with the book that it is as if every word resonates within you? The words hold life, move in your being and serve as a confirmation for you, deconstructing any hopelessness you may be feeling inside. Change comes at that moment and you can hope again. The words breathe live into your being. They are an affirmation that the dreams you carry within are real and true, even though it seems like a long time coming.

I was reading “The Artisan Soul” when suddenly, I was so in sync with what I was reading, it was as if I simply could not handle it anymore. I had to back away from the book and go into a time of worship. Creativity and Christianity the subject. That’s my heartbeat, my dream, my passion.

As I worshipped I wanted to grab hold of this reality yet how often had I been disappointed over the years? I want the Body of Christ to get this, to move in this, to live in creativity yet how often did I see myself venture out and then back up because of discouragement. I preached it and sometimes very few people got it or understood it. Churches seem to want the practical, the success, the results. Creativity seems a bit nebulous to many leaders. My worship that day was filled with both hope and fear. Hope that it was real and I would walk in its reality. Fear that it was never going to happen. .

Going in and out of churches over the years consistently showed me that there is usually little creativity abounding in the atmosphere. What do I mean by that? Well, there is the same ole’ program week after week after week. If you are interested read my blog post on Robots and Clones.

SpiralI am not talking about movements or meetings where there has been gold dust or jewels or whatever. I am talking about something new and fresh, a way to move in the Spirit where the atmosphere is charged in creative ways, individually and corporately and you just know it, you just sense it. It takes those attune with Holy Spirit, artisans of the Spirit, to interpret this atmosphere and then to move in it with wisdom and grace and also to grow in it, abdicating control to Holy Spirit. I don’t know how else to say it. I guess I have been trying to relate spiritual terms in practical ways to make this blog more understandable, but I just can’t. I am appealing to those who are people of the Spirit, Holy Spirit – the Spirit who reveals Jesus Christ to us in glorious and expansive ways. That same Jesus who is you and I as Christians, the source of creativity.

Even in writing this blog, I find my self-editor is more concerned with being understood than just writing in the flow. Doing that, I edit and sometimes it just loses its edge. Perhaps I want to minister to the mainstream flow, be understood with a lot of likes, but I have never been like that and being honest with myself, I don’t really want that. I have always been a bit quirky, spiritual and ready and willing to risk moving in Holy Spirit.

Again, in talking about creative atmospheres, I am not talking about charismatic movement type atmospheres. I have been to so many of those. I love them but there is more, so much more. I am talking a corporate infusing of creativity in the Body of Christ, flowing through people and churches. Places of habitations of His glory where creativity flows in tune with the sounds and visions of heaven. I have always considered myself a forerunner but when I really stopped to think about it, I realized I was scared to death of going out on a limb, stepping out ahead of the pack. Yet staying in what is comfortable left me frustrated, bored and discouraged. You may want to read my last blog post.

So, now I want to write by Holy Spirit even if some don’t initially get it. And, yes, I have a strong Scriptural foundation, which grounds me to the Word of God, the Holy Spirit and Jesus. How to move alongside Holy Spirit to create those atmospheres? Perhaps you already know of some, or are actually in places where there is a strong undercurrent of creativity taking place. I have not seen many in my lifetime.

What happens when an undercurrent of creativity flows within a people and within a Body, and within the church? I believe this is what I wanted in Finland with all my heart. It did not happen there and that’s okay but the dream is still alive in me. Let me mull over this for a day or two and I will be back to blog about Jesus + glory + creative atmospheres + creative people =? I believe I have seen creative atmospheres. I believe I have seen creative people moving independently in a church. But what about when the two come in sync in synergy…isn’t creativity, His glory, and His power greater in groups coming together? Synergy = greater than the sum of separate efforts. Lots to talk about here. Let me do some thinking.

DebraIn Christ
Debra

I would love to speak at your conference, gathering, church or home group. Contact me here, on Facebook or on Twitter. Enjoy reading about Rivers of Eden and the Timeline of our Life!

Deep Canyons, Distant Dreams – There’s Got To Be A Way To The Other Side

DreamsHere I am, standing on the edge of a great canyon. Looking down all I can see is how deep the bottom seems to be. Looking up, the distance between me and the other side seems enormous. It’s over there, yet it is unattainable to me, even after all this time.

My ideas, dreams, revelation – there they are, on the other side. My declarations, what I believe – I spoke them forth, but they manifested in the distance, a bit of an illusion.  Do I really believe them? All these declarations build up on the other side, far away from me. I interact with them in my heart; words come out of my mouth, yet I can’t seem to actually flow in their reality now.

I know what God has placed inside of me. I dream with Him each day, yet it never seems to manifest in the now, right now. My life’s design, that place of flow in my being, always appears elusive and distant, like I am fighting to get to a place that I already know I am at. How do I cross this great divide?

Echoes rise up from the canyon. These echoes are the sounds from the deep – accusations that remind me of the futility of even believing I can cross over. Accusations, over and over of what was and what is keep me from what can be on the other side.

Standing there, I am continually reminded what was – wasted time, fears, failures, regrets – all the necessary stuff that keeps me grounded in the past while standing in the present on the edge of this canyon of impossibility.

This is not just a story for me. During a time of worship and prayer yesterday, I received this as a vision. Throughout the day, I continually kept asking myself, “How do I get across to the other side?” Instead of bringing a sense of peace, this vision frustrated me.

I picked up ‘The Artisan Soul’ by Erwin McManus to continue reading where I left off, not knowing that I would receive revelation about my vision. Have you ever been reading and the words leap off the page into your soul? Then, they expand into a knowing, a deep knowing that changes your life in a moment. God brings the light of truth into the situation. He coordinated all these points of process for me – the vision, the book, the words. He combined them in creative ways to reveal Himself to me, right in the middle of my frustration and my relationship with Him is strengthened. I know that He loves me and deeply cares about my life. These words opened up a door of revelation for me.

The Artisan Soul

“Scripture is permeated with the intention of God. Humanity is God’s culminating act of creativity, designed with the highest intention to reflect most personally the likeness of God. Intention precedes creation and essence informs intention.”

This is just a small quote from a glorious book. God loves details. Look at Scripture – the creation story, the building of the tabernacle, etc. etc. God is intentional before He creates and He creates for love of His creation (that being us) and for relationship with His creation (that being us). His intention forms His creation. What is in His heart and in His mind is formed and created through His intentional act of love for us.

All day I kept thinking of these words, “Intention precedes creation.” Standing on the edge of the canyon kept me in close proximity to the echoes of my past –its fears and failures. I am called to be creative yet I am not intentional in actually believing His creative design for my life, more often considering myself a fraud because of past mistakes. I am fearful of being intentional, of actually walking by faith into what I know to be true deep inside myself. Without intention, all this creativity just lays dormant inside of me, bound up in fears, wrapped in regret. This places me on the edge of the canyon. Intention requires risk, bravery and courage on my part. Intention requires BEING me. Intention requires focus and faith.

HeartFor the creative to flow in and through me, I must be intentional in that which I want to create in sync with God, Christ in me. All that flows under the surface, in the corners of my heart, in the depths of my soul, within my dreams and ideas right now deep inside me, must come forth with intention, trusting in God. Intention brings it out of me, amidst all the fear and trepidation. Intention is to trust God, trust Christ in me.

Intention = design, meaning, forethought, an aim or plan.

I quickly realized that despite everything, inside, deep inside, I am not intentional because I don’t truly believe God will flow through me and fulfill His design in me. That is why God gave me the vision. He wants me to start being intentional about why I am in time for such a time as this. Intention precedes creativity flowing through my life. He knows me.

Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I shaped you in the womb, I knew all about you….

God intentionally breathed life in me through Christ, creating me as His masterpiece. I, in turn, am to be intentional in creating life as I live, move, and have my being in him.

My words for 2015: Be intentional.

This blog for 2015 is on ongoing journey, one step at a time, one day at a time. Be intentional – that forms my bridge to the other side. At some point, one has to start living in faith, not fear.

This is a great quote:

“The past will be our future until we have the courage to create a new one. To make our lives a creative act is to marry ourselves to risk and failure.”

In 2015, each blog post is a journey. I won’t reach a resolution in each blog or give anyone a 10-step program to freedom or even how to be creative. I journey with words, ideas, dreams, pictures, and revelation into a new place. Enjoy the journey with me!

What’s keeping you from living and moving in what God has formed in you before you were even born? How can you move across your own great divide?

DebraIn Christ,
Debra

I would love to speak at your conference, gathering, church or home group. Contact me here or on Twitter. Enjoy reading about Rivers of Eden and the Timeline of our Life!