It’s Time to Dialogue with our God! The Beauty of His Voice

Speaking

It’s Time to Dialogue with our God! Back to Basics!

This is a simple post. Not exactly earth shattering. Not prophesying the future. Simplistic in its nature to get back to the basics of relationship. To engage and focus. That is key to 2017. Let 2017 come at us with all its’ got………our focus and position determines our perspective. Let faith and hope arise.

Let’s put down our phones, shut down our computers, go somewhere to spend time with Jesus. It’s time to dialogue, to talk with God about our lives, our future, and our present.

My sheep recognize my voice. I know them, and they follow me. John 10:27 (MSG)

That’s the basis of relationship – communication. I’m amazed at the number of Christians who adhere to its doctrine and its moral law but totally neglect experience – Father, Son and Holy Spirit engaging with a son or daughter to enrich their life with eternal perspective and reality.

How many actually spend time with a communicative God? A God that loves to talk to us as a Father.

How about Jesus and Holy Spirit? They all communicate to their children….that’s us.

I spend time in a listening mode with the Lord. He guides my life, gives me instruction, tells me where to go, and where not to go. I live in the reality of eternity right here and now.

imagesSo, it’s time to dialogue with God, one on one, up front and personal.

With all the noise out there in the form of social media, TV, radio……….it’s too much. The only One who knows everything about your past, present and future is God.

Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother’s womb. I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration—what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; you know exactly how I was made, bit-by-bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Psalms 139:13-15 (MSG)

I have journals, lots of them. That’s me. Perhaps one journal or even two is enough for you. I’m making this a law. I believe it is absolutely necessary to know the voice of God. It will get us out of some harrowing situations in the future. It will also place us on a path of identity to follow and flow into our destiny. Know His Voice.

Sit, talk, and pour your heart out to the Father. Ask Holy Spirit for direction and guidance. We are in this world but not of this world so engaging with eternity is our reality.

Approach God just as you are and He will straighten you out in the places that are bent, out of shape, distorted from years of lies and accusations. You can start out talking, talking talking BUT at some point you have to learn to listen. That takes faith to sit still and be quiet. It can seem so extraordinarily simple that it appears to be ridiculous sitting in silence, reaching out to a God you can’t always see.

Engage, listen. No more multitasking. Unplug.

Enter into conversation. It’s a two-way street. No more spectator sport where we passively sit in a service and listen, as if we are robots. Gatherings are great but what do you do with the rest of your life?

Here’s what to do (if you aren’t doing it already.)

Get quiet. Anytime is okay – morning, noon or night. I prefer morning and He sets the tone for my day.

Worship.

Adore Him.

Express gratitude and thanksgiving even when all hell is breaking loose around you.

Ask questions……He answers…..it may not be what you want to hear, but He will answer.

One morning, in the midst of some pretty heavy discouragement, I heard Holy Spirit whisper. “This is not the end. This is just the beginning.”

His voice came from inside (Christ in me) while at the same time whispering in an eternal tone that I have come to recognize over the years as His, not mine. Most of the time, God speaks to me in whispers and over the years I have cultivated my ears to hear and my heart to respond.

Don’t you want to know what He thinks about you? What He has for you? Dialogue, listen and learn.

Debra

 

Living with Passion and Purpose in Christ,
Debra

 

 

Please share this post. It’s beautifully basic in the midst of a noisy world!

I’d love  to speak at your gathering, conference or home group, please send me a message on the contact page or email me at westbrook.debra@gmail.com Please visit Rivers of Eden Ministry page to find out something About Us.

A Time Of…Connecting, Piecing, Focusing

Glory of Zion/Chuck Pierce had a dynamic message on Sunday. He said that it is time for:

Connecting the Dots
Putting the pieces together
Vision becomes clear
Two things becoming one
People see you differently

It is time. Time for seeing the Lord re-integrate our lives into wholeness. Time to re-member our lives into His purpose.

The enemy seeks to fragment us by attacking our identity and scattering our focus. Scripture tells us that he roars around seeking whom he may devour and that his purpose is to steal, kill and destroy. This is still his plan today. And, for many of us, it has been a hard year, filled with attacks on our finances, health, families, marriages and more.

But God…….

God is going to re-integrate, re-member, and restore our lives to standing firm in the reality of our identity in Christ. How will He do this? It will be unique for each one of us. I believe in this word from Glory of Zion.  If you want to hear more of it just go to Glory of Zion and listen to Sunday morning’s message. I can sense that change is in the air. Here is how those points above relate to my life.

Connecting the DotsConnecting the Dots – There were times when I would try to form the picture from the very little I had. It did not work, at all. Many times I felt that my life was built on uncoordinated, out of sync pieces that would come together for a moment in time, never to be heard of again. Relationships that I truly felt were traveling with me into my future fell by the wayside. Ministry opportunities where I gave my all only to be put to the side when something or someone better came along disappeared into a vapor. The dots just drifted in space, each one holding substance but not yet integrally linked to see a picture. God will now connect some of these dots that seemed confusing at the time to show me that He was behind the scenes working in my life for a greater glory. Of course, not all will be revealed this side of heaven but that’s ok. I’ll take what I can get and more.

PuzzlePutting the pieces together – During this past year, in my frustration, I often mentioned to my husband that our lives felt like a puzzle, spread out in pieces on a kitchen table. The problem was that the pieces all appeared to be in the right color and form, ready to be put together but whenI tried, nothing happened. Over and over, I tried. It never worked. Why? Only God can piece it all together. All the mess, all the ups and downs, and all the in-betweens. They really are forming a great picture, called My Life and they all work for good.

EyeVision becomes clear & People see you differently – So much to say about this. This past year I have felt like this:

They arrived at Bethsaida. Some people brought a sightless man and begged Jesus to give him a healing touch. Taking him by the hand, he led him out of the village. He put spit in the man’s eyes, laid hands on him, and asked, “Do you see anything?” He looked up. “I see men. They look like walking trees.” So Jesus laid hands on his eyes again. The man looked hard and realized that he had recovered perfect sight, saw everything in bright, twenty–twenty focus (Mark 8:22-25 Message)

My desire: clear focus again, clear prophecy, clear spiritual vision. It’s happening. As for people seeing me differently, that would take a whole blog post so whey don’t you look at this one? And this one?

Two things becoming one – still thinking about this one so I will focus on just the above for now.

This prophetic word is life to me. How about you? Do any of these points connect with you?

Debra

In Christ,
Debra
Rivers of Eden Ministry
About Me

And the River Flows!

Blue Flowing RiverCreativity is like a river to me, flowing within the banks of discipline, hard work, risk, success and definitely failure. Without the restraint of the banks, the overflow of the river can be spontaneous and free but without direction and focus. It’s within the river that the work takes place in a flowing process, leading onward.

Creative people can get lost in moments that lead to other moments and before you know it, you are somewhere flowing over the banks far away from where you started. That seems free and spontaneous but it actually goes nowhere if you do that. Or we can just float along the river on a raft, enjoying the scenery but never putting creativity into action. There is restraint in creative process that requires risk and action.

I love spontaneity but I want to see my creativity harnessed within the process, between the banks of the river – greater flow, greater power to birth creative ideas. For me it’s like this. The creative process starts when I get ideas, thoughts, or revelation. As I move along with the river of God, these ideas grow and take form within me. I become focused and focus leads to action. Staying within the banks of the river requires risk and hard work. Staying within creative restraint, in the river between its banks, brings forth the work whether that is a blog post, art, music, business ideas or any number of ways. I can’t float along always talking about writing, dreaming – I take action in the flow.

Flowing RiverAt some point while flowing along in the river, faith and risk are byproducts of my discipline in the river. I got in the water. What did I expect? To float along forever, risk free, without any manifestation of my dreams, my creative ideas? That’s for people flowing over the banks – not me. I find myself alive in this creative river. I risk. I dream. I try and I keep trying. I do the work here. Creativity that only lives in ideas, never manifesting into reality, is not what I want at this point in my life. I keep flowing along. The scenery changes, birthing new ideas. People join me in the flow and we may even hook up for a bit to produce something in synergy that I could not produce alone. There is so much to say about this isn’t there?

As I live, move and have my being in Christ, rivers of living water in Holy Spirit flow out from my inner life, manifesting in so many creative diverse ways, touching other lives. It all starts in the river for me. Our ministry, Rivers of Eden, can be seen in this blog post. As I am writing this at Starbucks, I see that now. Over the years, the enemy has tried to block, dam, and dry up the river but it is still flowing through me and through Marvin, taking us on this creative journey. Now it’s time for others to join us in the river so we can impart life, love and creative destiny in Christ.

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!

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!

Fears Thrives in a Realm of Distraction

Fear is a liarFear thrives in a realm of distraction. Looking every which way, I can focus on all the peripheral stuff in my life, which then only enhances the debilitating effects of fear. Fear is like a cancer that creeps up on us, relentless and invasive. As it tries to set up its throne, it seeks to ultimately destroy my life and yours. That is its purpose. It is evil and only seeks to kill and destroy.

Jesus says it like this: ‘The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10 NKJVS)

Peter says it like this: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” (1 Peter 5:8 NKJVS)

Simply ignoring this truth won’t make it go away for the enemy is relentless in his pursuit of getting our eyes off of Jesus Christ. Fear is one tactic enemy uses to try to destroy our life and peace in Christ.

While I don’t continually focus on spiritual warfare, preferring to keep my focus on Christ, I do accept this reality of it in my life. Fear is a liar. And, it does not give up that easily. Look around. How many do you and I see each day bound by fear? It is a killer of life. Anxiety, worry, depression – they are all the overflow of fear in so many lives all around us.

Benicia CrossRather then giving a quick shallow cliché or even attempt to provide an easy solution, I want to say to each of us today: “Focus on Jesus Christ.” I turn my eyes away from anything that easily distracts me. This is life, ongoing for me. I pull my focus back to Christ continually throughout my day and in my life.

I would like to say that the world will get better and we can anticipate a utopian paradise rising up soon. The world will live in peace and harmony, joining hands and singing Kumbaya. Nations will coexist peacefully alongside other nations. Wars, both internally and externally, will cease to exist because of the nobility and honor of people all across the globe. That won’t happen.

In transparency and honesty, I can only say “Focus.” There is way more chaos, confusion, and destruction coming our way. As a Christian, I am called to live in the world but not be of the world. I am affected in situations because I am human but I am not entangled in this life with overwhelming fear, anxiety and depression.

Fear must be faced head on so that it does not gain any hold in our lives. Running from it or denying it will not stop its invasive demands on our lives. To confront the enemy one must call out the enemy and then face the enemy. Strength and courage must rise up within us to know our lives are hidden in Christ.

My life is Christ. Whether I live or die is not the problem, I have already died and my life is hidden in Christ, now. Now I choose to live in Christ.

Fear kills – creativity, life, adventure, journey, process and more. I want to focus on some foundational realities in the coming days here on this blog. And it all starts now by acknowledging that the enemy will resist us on every turn as we try to live our lives in Christ. Here are some verses that are coming your way in future blog posts. The river is flowing. Enjoy the journey as I flow in this direction. True creativity in Christ arises within us as we set our minds on Christ, knowing our life is hid in Him. As chaos and confusion, disease, destruction or whatever else surrounds us on all sides, our life is hid in Christ Jesus. This is reality.

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)

Then He said to them all, “ If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. 24 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it. (Luke 9:23-24 NKJVS)

If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things, which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. 2 Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. 3 For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. (Colossians 3:1-4 NKJVS)

Debra 2In 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!