Present Moments, Future Promises – The Now & The Not Yet

Life is experienced within a divine tension between where I stand right now and where I want to be in the future, my not yet. Living in this tension is not always easy and sometimes in deep frustration I may want to escape from my own life. Over the past 10 years, while trying to build a ministry, I continually focused on my not yet times, discounting the beauty waiting to be revealed in the moments that were right before me.

This cost me friendships, unique life experiences that were right before me. But, I was driven, seeking a passionate pursuit of promises in my not yet future. Rather than waiting on God, enjoying the journey, I often disregarded my day, focusing ahead, in a hurry to get there. Looking back, I was filled with regret over what could have been that I simply did not see. There were moments hidden in my day to day that I bypassed looking for more important endeavors.

FlickrWhile I lived in Abu Dhabi, I focused on Finland. When I was in Finland, I focused on Abu Dhabi. When I was in the States close to my family, I was always thinking about something else. God revealed to me how often I was not in the moment. I was present but my mind was captivated by something else, always. I am very thankful that God does indeed redeem the time, making all things new, with fresh starts instead of false starts.

All along this journey, people kept giving me the same prophetic word, over and over, in various ways, through various people at various times.

Rest.

Debra, God says to rest.

Holy Spirit is teaching you to rest.

Those words became a thorn in my flesh because my flesh was concentrating on making ministry happen. I almost disdained that word – rest. Why? Because it hit my heart at a place I needed healing and I didn’t want to deal with it. It’s the same sad story for many of us. Trying to please God. Performing to prove ourselves to others and to God. Trying to win His approval. I’m sure many of you reading this can relate to this constant pursuit to be accepted by God for how you perform.

Little Guy With PostitsI wanted to build, to grow a ministry, to find my place in time, to access my destiny. Along the way, there were many false starts as you can read from the previous blog post. I lived looking ahead, constantly. When God finally saw fit to shut it all down, I struggled with rejection, feeling abandoned and deep regret. Then guilt also set in trying to make it right. What a mess!

Rest, trust, abiding. I get it……….now.

Life is short on this earth. Keep the main thing the main thing. Never forget it. Life is filled with moments of hidden potential. Yet, they are lost if we continually focus and fill our time with the not yet in the future. Our focused pursuit of this not yet trying to make it happen or trying to get ahead leaves us completely bankrupt. Sadly, we don’t see it until some future point that we strive to get to achieve what we think we want. We find it only leaves us empty.

I thank God that each day is filled anew with His mercy and grace. I thank Him that there are second chances, third chances, fourth chances…..

All God’s promises will come to pass, in His timing and In His way. By faith I access the not yet future through spiritual vision. I walk day by day, looking at my horizon line, knowing God knows the way. Through visions, prophetic words, and dreams, God reveals to me great and glorious things for me to do now and in the not yet future. I walk. I live. I trust. Life is a continual journey, one to be explored, a great adventure. My life in Christ flows in sync with eternity’s divine rhythm while living on earth. That is Christianity at its finest.

Each day holds beauty, moments filled with astonishing revelation of His abounding grace. I accept the now times of my life, living each day to the fullest. I don’t discount the day, no matter how routine or boring life may appear to be. Life’s mundane routines hold the glory of Christ. There are moments in each day, which hold keys to hidden doors, waiting to be opened into wide places of opportunity. I open my eyes to see, right now.

The future is realized through walking in sync with God in my now. I don’t have to run to get there. It will unfold right before my eyes as I focus on intimacy with the Lord. I am learning to be content and in that there is great wisdom.

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!

No More Event Based Spirituality! – A Great Quote

“Stop being an audience and become something else. Stop waiting for people to lift you into a new place. No more event-based spirituality!” Graham Cooke

Light and life flow from these words – “No more event based spirituality!”

As I read words that are so in sync with my heart, I can barely handle it. I get up, walk and pray. This is one of those statements. The damage that event based spirituality has caused in the body of Christ is huge. In fact, my mind is racing ahead of my ability to type right now so I must stop and meditate on this for a bit, wondering why this bothers me so much. It really bothers me – event based Christianity/spirituality.

Event based Christianity = western Christianity for the most part. Gather the crowds, promote, sell, speak a message that’s popular, and then gather the statistics on how successful it was. Then, wait awhile and start over again, with the same people speaking and the same crowds attending year by year. I have seen this happening for years now. The same speakers over and over at the same conferences over and over.

Even in churches, there is a great divide that exists between those “up there” and those who come week after week, sitting in seats, going in and going out. This pattern repeats itself over and over again. The speakers and the audience. Yes, if one attends regularly, there are ministries to be involved in, special meetings to attend and more, yet after years of seeing this form of church, it still appears to fall short of the very life of Christ flowing through a body of believers. There are great shifts coming. Of that, I am sure. There has to be change – resurrection power requires death – death to the way we DO church to become the church Christ intended us to BE.

Open RoadEvent based spirituality (whether in a conference format or a church that flows like an entertainment venue) begins to take on a life of its own, not the life of Christ in Holy Spirit. That is evident as we visit churches. Some seem to be rolling on with their own momentum, with very little evidence of the supernatural power or anointing of Holy Spirit. Some simply don’t know Holy Spirit. Some flow as a business. For whatever reason, I believe change is desperately needed.

In our immaturity as Christians, we cry out for something we can feel, see and touch. We run from the call to maturity on any level because it is uncomfortable and required some measure of suffering.  To flow in resurrection power, one must die to live. We don’t like death don’t we? Who does?

Sometimes it is easier to keep a church or a movement on life support rather than pull the plug to see what rises from the ashes.

Marvin and I don’t have any option right now except to focus on Jesus and the way He wants us to take. Pretty much everything has been pulled from our lives and we stand empty-handed. It’s a great place to be…..now.

Authentic Christianity is community oriented in Christ. Event based spirituality is not. We need to make the shift. Many are already making the shift and it has led many out – out of churches, out of structure, out. I love the church but the church needs to change its course and its focus. Pull the plug on any measure of life support and let it die so that it may live in Christ. It’s not about us anyway, is it?

Christ in me, Christ in you, Christ in us. It is all quite simple. Event based spirituality/Christianity lacks flow and authenticity. Boundaries and borders form in the natural with a focus on product – the product being numbers of people, financial rewards, and more. This is man’s wisdom. Christian community is organic and flowing, listening and responding to the directives of Holy Spirit.

Authentic Christianity forms by listening and obeying Holy Spirit, walking by faith when all seems contrary to natural wisdom. Growth comes through heavenly directives, not cultural trends.

Authentic Christianity flows in God appointed leadership who impart into people’s lives and co-create an atmosphere in Christ where people flow in their unique creative expression in Christ.

Authentic Christianity thrives on change.

Authentic Christianity lives in an eternal perspective as we are seated in heavenly places.

Authentic Christianity is formed and established in love. Love is messy, flowing, moving, and changing at all times. This all makes life interesting and keeps us focus on Jesus.

Authentic Christianity is dynamic, not static.

So where is one to find this? There are habitations of His glory forming, with more rising up each day. Holy Spirit is creating them in locations all across the earth – buildings, home groups, coffee shops and more. The creativity is endlessly and eternally being expressed in Christ. There’s no stopping Him. What is our part? (Each of us has a part in the Spirit.) As we go to Kenya in 2015, we will walk alongside pastors there to encourage and build them up in Christ to BE their unique expression in Christ.

There is so much more on this topic but these are my words for today. Extraordinary times are ahead of us in 2015. I perceive them now and focus on being in sync with God, no matter where He calls me or what He tells me to do. I am an extraordinary woman who walks in the excellence of Holy Spirit.

Extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures.” Benet Wilson

Debra and ChloeIn 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!