Dare To Jump

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What if I fly “You cannot always wait for the perfect time.  Sometimes, you must dare to jump.”  @WomenOfHistory

No hesitation. He who does not risk, sometime, one little thing, anything – does not change. There is that moment of fear – that moment where doubt or questions arise yet we know deep within ourselves there is no turning back. What are the choices? To stay in this place and die a slow death or jump into the adventure in Christ.

I_Can_FlyChrist Jesus is our safety net as we start to jump. He who has called us never leaves us or forsakes us. He waits for us to move outside the boundaries of our comfort zones that we have created to stay safe. Well…………time to let down those self-created obstacles to exhilarating faith and leap into freedom. Is it dangerous? Perhaps but when God initiates the idea and we respond to the adventure, He follows through, resourcing our every step.

Soaring EagleWhat else to say? It’s quite simple. “But those who wait upon God get fresh strength. They spread their wings and soar like eagles, they run and don’t get tired, they walk and don’t lag behind (Isaiah 40:31 Message)

Go Deep, Not Wide

Flickr flowing waterRivers of living water flow through my life. This is a promise given to me by Jesus Christ.

He who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, out of the heart shall flow rivers of living water. John 7:38 (NKJV)

Rivers of living water will brim and spill out of the depths of anyone who believes in me this way, just as the Scripture says. John 7:38 (Message)

What happens in those seasons when I only see trickles of water going forth, not a moving flow? Does the Word lose its reality and power? Of course not. The word is eternal, alive living. Yet, how about the manifestation in my life so that I am in sync with the word itself? Walking the Word is the way I love to say it.

I can’t force ‘flow”. Holy Spirit reveals Christ in my life. That flow is seamless and moving as my life is in sync with eternal realities in Christ. The Spirit directs the path and leads the way. It grows and I go from glory to glory.

Flow is that sweet spot, a seamless life in connection with God in Holy Spirit, living on earth with an awareness of the divine nature of Christ in me. (2 Peter 1:2) The Holy Spirit is our divine connector. (John 16:13-15) In reality, we are not moving in and out of the position. We exist in that place in Christ. We may have days where our awareness grows dim in the revelation, but that reality does not change as we are in Christ.

The awareness of the flow in Holy Spirit can be seen as mystical or supernatural and it is that. Yet I want to go beyond these words, which can immediately alienate people who feel they are neither mystical nor supernatural. Flow is life in Christ and the outworking of that life, His divine nature, is uniquely our creative expression in the earth today. I am in Christ and His life flows seamlessly through me.

Flickr flowing river 2I want to go deep in this revelation, deeper every day. I want to live in the midst of eternity invading my life. Rivers of living water flowing from me – my reality. The manifestation of this truth is multifaceted. Yes, there are the gifts of the Spirit in prophecy, healing, words of knowledge or wisdom – all of which sync us with heaven while on earth. Yet, I believe it goes beyond this when I contemplate the very life of Christ in me.

Paul says it like this: “…for in Him we live and move and have our being…” (Acts 17:28 NKJV)

Leonard Sweet has a great quote: “…to reveal Jesus’ incarnational beauty, truth and goodness to the world.”

To go deep? What does that mean for me? Living life out of the mix at times. Moving past updating, checking every post on my feed, keeping ahead of the latest developments so that I am trending my life in the moment. This is life living in the shallow water. Why? Because information never ceases. The Internet never shuts down and I will never get ahead of it. It will only cease to widen my life into an unrecognizable form. I want to go deep, not wide. I don’t need to know anything or follow any prescribed formulas. I follow Christ. He is the way, the truth, and the life.

Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth; shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. (Isaiah 43:19 NKJV)

Each of us has a journey in Christ. This diversity infuses the Body of Christ with creativity and originality. It is essential that we go deep, not wide. Too many live in the shallows right now. Journey out into the deep in Christ Jesus.

Image #1 – Flickr – Pandu Adnyana
Image #2 – Flickr – Jogendra Joshi

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!

I’m Awake!

Have you ever seen the movie Groundhog Day? For those of you living overseas, here’s a clip from that movie. Bill Murray is caught in a moment of time – one day that repeats itself over and over and over again. He wakes up each day and it’s 6 am. Frustration and anger rise within him and he starts to do some pretty bizarre things. It’s quite funny and one of my favorite movies.

I can relate to this movie – my own groundhog day. Waking up, hoping and believing yet nothing changes and it’s the same ole’ same ole’. Just like Bill, my nerves were on end this year and out of the abundance of my heart, negativity, complaining, and anger frequently flowed out. Then something happened. I can’t see it or prove it but just like Bill, I woke up today and  knew “It’s a new day.”

In fact, several friends confirmed this on my Facebook feed, feeling the same way despite overwhelming circumstances in their own lives right now.  Don’t worry if you don’t feel it or can’t relate. The prophetic needs to declare what is seen despite outward manifestations that may appear to be going in the opposite direction. It is a new day and 2015 will be an extraordinary year for many of us. Only believe. I mean, how was 2014 for you? For Marvin and I, 2014 has been like hell at times along with 2013 and 2012. It was some hard times, which we often did not talk about to many people. But we did walk it out on a daily basis. But today? It’s a new day.

So back to the movie. Eventually, Bill gets tired of the sameness, the ever-repeating day and slowly but surely, He starts to rest in the beauty of the moments. Things start to change. He gets happy and hopeful again. This is also what I did along the course of this past year. Somewhere in the midst of 2014, I realized that no matter how hard I tried, complained, got angry, nothing changed. God’s hand seemed to be restraining me for His purpose and His purpose was to teach me rest. Rest in Him. He knows me and He knows the way I walk. So I learned to rest and I am still learning this. My vision is clearing up and my hearing is also quite refined.

Then one day, Bill wakes up and the clock is not stuck on 6 am but moves to 6:01 am and 6:02, time moving forward minute by minute. He is out of the rut, the sameness. That also happened to me today. I got up, stretched and felt a bit different. I was a bit wary at first, I must admit. What is this? Joy. Peace. Rest. It is real and I can sense it.

Today – I’m awake.

Now, let me qualify some things if you appear to feel a bit wary that this may be another one of those clichéd religious words, without substance. If you have ever moved in prophetic circles over the years, words such as breakthrough, new day, revival, destiny – they’ve all been thrown out, over and over again. Over these years, I have become resistant to these clichés because over time, they seemed to be unable to hold any weight of glory in Christ. I wanted more. I wanted the person – Jesus Christ more than any thing else. These words are all meaningful but these words have their substance in Christ, the living Word. You can’t speak these words outside of the reality of Jesus Christ.

So this is what came to me on Facebook today.

Words like breakthrough, destiny, and identity – they are all very important. But, they cannot be removed from Christ as if they hold a separate identity apart from Jesus. When we get our priorities straight and our focus is corrected, extraordinary things happen.

So today I realized that I broke through the reality of the clichés into the person – Jesus and His great love for me.

It is a new day. I am not sure exactly what that means in its totality yet. It is a prophetic word for me and I hope for you too. So I declare what I see now believing it will work itself out in light and life over the coming days.

One good thing that manifested in the flow of the word. Kenya, 2015 – we finally are released to go back with the right connections and in the right time, August 2015. It did not happen in 2014 for some reason, but it’s a new day. So, in my life, the fog is lifting. The horizon is clear. The now is filled with a measure of hope. It is all in Christ.

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!

Hiddenness: Lessons Learned – Moving On!

I believe we are all getting the picture on being hidden in plain sight. Before I write on some new topics, I want to share with you below some great closing thoughts from my husband Marvin.

I had something happen to me when my job took me on a short-term assignment in Atlanta. One day, I felt that God was leading me to visit a church in the Atlanta area and that He would show me which one as I stepped out in faith and just started driving. So, I got in my car and started driving. I felt God say to get off at a certain exit and go to the church that would be right there when I got off the freeway.

Much to my surprise, I exited the freeway, stopped at the stop sign, and directly at an angle to me was a church that was scheduled to have a meeting within fifteen minutes. As I pulled into the parking area, God gave me a word to give to the Pastor of the church. God also told me that I could not give the word unless the Pastor directly recognized me.

I got out of my car and entered the church. I sat in the middle aisle seat in the third row. Maybe I did this subconsciously so that I would be somewhat assured that at least the Pastor would see me. Let me also say, that as I entered the church, no one greeted me or even said hello. I sat there as a new guest waiting for the service to start.

The worship started and the Pastor came out on the platform. He began to pray specifically for certain things to happen. These were the exact words God gave me to speak to the Pastor that day. I almost fell out of my seat. I wanted to jump up shout, but I waited patiently to see what would happen.

The Pastor made eye contact with me several times. As much as I wanted to make myself seen by going forth, all I could do was sit and wait to be recognized. That never happened. No one even asked if there were any visitors that day.

Now I guess you could say that since there must have been over three hundred people in the service that day, it was easy for the leaders and the Pastor to be focused only on their agenda, never listening to God that perhaps He wanted to do something different. I may agree with you but before you make that final statement, let me add something.

Again, remember, I was at a church in the Deep South (Atlanta, Georgia) that I never knew existed until I got off the freeway. I seated myself in the center aisle seat of the third row directly in front of the pulpit. If being in that position was not enough to be seen as a first time visitor this next fact might be enough to show you how someone can be hidden in plain sight.

Now, I have already said that there were over 300 people in this meeting. Well, out of those 300 people, I was the only light-skinned (white) person in the congregation. I was a white male sitting in an all black congregational meeting in the Deep South. To put it in an old saying: I had to stick out like a sore thumb, yet I was never recognized as being in the meeting. I was in plain sight but hidden from being seen. I was not able to give the answers to the questions being asked in the prayers.

Driving in my car back to my residence, I asked God, “Why was I hidden in plain sight”? God said, “You weren’t hidden. You were in plain sight, but the leaders were blinded because the Pastor had taken ownership of something that I (God) had only lent to him. He was expecting the answers to come in way that he felt they should come. He would not relinquish the pulpit to another.”

Marvin’s example brings a keen awareness that this has happened to us more times that we care to think about. So what now? We see the problem but what now?  Well, there are lessons I learned during this season that have changed my life. Here are a few of them:

  • Wisdom is a most precious commodity today and in the days to come. Wisdom to know when to speak, when to be quiet, when to let things slide, when to confront, when to rest, when to work.
  • My source is in Christ Jesus. In Him I live, move and have my being.
  • Being alone is not the same as being lonely! Get out of the mix. Unplug. Get away from people. Be quiet in the presence of God.
  • Don’t ever be swept up in a massive amount of information as it dulls the senses. Purify your media diet. Restrict your diet to that which gives you life and enhances the person God created you to be.
  • Relationships will blossom during this time but this time, they will grow in depth because the real you is coming forth, not the you that you thought you were, others thought you were, etc. It’s such a good thing.

Those are just a few things. It’s a good day………….a very good day.

DebraIn Christ,
Debra

Rivers of Eden Ministry would love to speak at your next conference, home group of gathering. Contact me on our Contact Page. Get to know me on Twitter, and by going to Our Timeline of Life.

God Sees – People Don’t

With Brave Wings, She FliesHow can I be hidden in plain sight? Isn’t that a contradiction? God sees all and knows all. Yet, people don’t. I am not hidden from God. I am hidden in God in Christ.

For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. (Colossians 3:3 NKJVS)

His hand hides me in the midst of people. Strange but true. The ways of the kingdom are contrary to the wisdom of man. In other words, God seems to do things that we don’t always understand. That’s a good thing. I am never hidden from God’s sight. He knows me intimately through and through.

For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well (Psalms 139:13-14 NKJVS)

Knowing that God sees me makes it a bit difficult to reconcile why a God that loves me beyond measure would set me in a hidden place. It does not make sense does it? Yet, I see so many gifted, anointed people just sitting and waiting while the chosen few seem to get ahead, pass us by, get lifted higher and higher in being seen, build bigger ministry platforms, and have great favor among the people. Many followers run here, there and everywhere wanting to be part of something bigger than themselves and they see that they can receive that from these ministries. This all seems to be a bit askew to me. This story comes to mind.

The story is told of an occasion where St. Thomas Aquinas was walking with a prelate through one of the grand cathedrals of his day. Referring to a coffer filled with precious coins, the prelate remarked, “Behold, Master Thomas, the church can no longer say, as St. Peter, ‘Silver and gold have I none!’” St. Thomas was apparently quick with his retort, “Alas, neither can we say what follows, ‘In the name of Jesus Christ, rise up and walk.’”

My father, raised during the depression of the 1920’s, used to tell me. “Honey, the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.” So what about today in the world at large and in western Christianity? The middle class gets smaller and smaller and smaller. The rich are getting richer and richer and richer. The poor are getting poorer and poorer. One calls it income inequality or an unfair distribution of wealth. Confirming this reality is a book I am reading called, Plutocrats. The rich are building their own kingdoms amidst the reality of increasing poverty, holding numerous passports AND paying homage to no country. In fact, they create their own countries among themselves. For whatever it is worth, I can see some similarities in what is happening in the world  and in the church at large. Why don’t you give it some thought? It seems to me that these iconic ministries, formidable church structures are creating their own kingdoms, enjoying the wealth, prosperity and fame it brings to them. They create a kingdom among themselves. There is so much to say about this. Let me go on. 

Amidst the grandeur of what is around us in Christianity, it seems good to get back to simplicity in Christ. In this transition before those who are hidden are pulled out into leadership, many stay hidden in plain sight. What does that really mean for me? I am choosing to submit to God’s way for me in this season. I can tell you that I tried to get out of this hidden state but no matter what I tried or did not try, I stayed hidden in plain sight.

Over and over, the gifts in me, any talent within me, the anointing of Holy Spirit, purpose, and passion was passed over in a myriad of ways. Choices had to be made. I could cry from the rooftops, hand out resumes to every conceivable ministry or church,  and force people to see me. Tried some of that. Didn’t work so I was more frustrated

So I did the opposite. I sat back and served. I was a good girl not rocking the boat. Again, despite my best efforts to conform to the church’s standard at large, I stayed hidden.

Perhaps you are wondering: What’s the difference? Why all the tension? Aren’t you making this harder than what it really is? What’s the big deal? Just get out there and do something.

Do we realize that as we mature in Christ, that this is NOT an option? In the process of maturing in Christ,  it is no longer an option to choose our way, whatever that looks like and however we can get it to work. Maturity brings with it a conforming to the image and the hand of God for my life. I don’t want just anything. In this season of my life, I want ME, the best me in Christ for this next step of the journey. What is God up to?

Well, it is twofold. He is teaching me to walk in the simplicity of Christ in complete trust so that His glory will be seen in my life, not me. He is teaching me to trust Him for His timing and purpose. And, at the same time, He is preparing his church at large, the Body of Christ, to look past the externals, the big names, etc. to open their eyes to see that there are many filled to abundance being passed over right in their midst. He is working on the church or the Body of Christ (whatever you want to call it – Christendom)  to accept ME and YOU for who we are, not trying to conform us to the current Christian standard or trend so that community and authentic Christianity can be built true to form and fashion in Christ.

Some Christian leaders can have people sitting in their midst, precious, creative, full of wisdom and grace AND what do they do? Nothing, Absolutely nothing. They proceed to take the same path that they always have, not willing to change or to see. Christians seem to want to grab hold of a sure thing, be part of some existing ministry or movement, rather than move into something creative and new and fresh. OR others want to stay in the same rut, the same way that they have been doing it for many years. There are problems to numerous to focus on. One thing is clear. Great shifting is taking place, great change is upon us and God is moving in our midst, His way. For that I am grateful for all that is happening and will happen in my life.

DebraIn Christ,
Debra

Rivers of Eden Ministry would love to speak at your next conference, home group of gathering. Contact me on our Contact Page. Get to know me on Twitter, and by going to Our Timeline of Life.