Hidden In Plain Sight – So Much To Learn

In seasons of my life when I am transitioning from one place into a new place, I am often hidden in plain sight. Not a fun place to be. Funnier still is that God Himself initiates and maintains this time for me. He waits for me to stop moving so much and just sit still for a bit. If I don’t discern the time, I will find myself in great pain trying of my own will to wiggle out of it. Not understanding the ways of God’s love for me, I can consider it a divine chastisement or deep rejection by some heavenly courtroom passing a verdict that says: “Unqualified.”

Hidden in plain sight teaches me to trust God and God alone. He knows me and has my best interests in His heart. And, He wants to see how I respond when He is all I have to define my life. What happens as I am stripped of so much that forms my identity according to the world’s demands? How do I handle the pressure of being constrained by the hand of God to submit to this place even when it hurts? How do I handle being passed over when I know I am the woman for the task and there’s some great stuff within me?

He waits until I release. Release what? All of my life into His life, His plans, His purpose, and His way. Obviously that is taking awhile. I still feel somewhat hidden, no matter what I do, but I know that this will not be forever. This does not mean that I stand still, not doing anything but waiting and wondering where I am heading. Each day is a journey. I just don’t try to make things happen anymore. I don’t walk ahead of His purpose, but I do keep walking. And, when someone forgets my name for the 100th time or forgets the name of Rivers of Eden, I can smile now. Heaven knows all the necessary details.

This is a good season, one filled with a growing wisdom in me. Continual downloads of wisdom fill my being, transforming my life and my accompanying actions. I am learning to listen more and speak about me much less. I am learning to quiet down to see and hear in the Spirit with greater accuracy.

Lessons are learned through tears. If I even look sideways to see the immense favors on other ministries or other people, I lose my focus and can easily fall into a hole for a bit. So I don’t. I keep looking forward, focused on Jesus and His plan for me, not some one else.

20 Then Peter, turning around, saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following, who also had leaned on His breast at the supper, and said, “ Lord, who is the one who betrays You?” 21 Peter, seeing him, said to Jesus, “But Lord, what about this man?” 22 Jesus said to him, “ If I will that he remain till I come, what is that to you? You follow Me. (John 21:20-22 NKJVS)

Yep I am a lot like Peter. Peripheral vision at this time is not a good thing.

You know, it’s true what God said to me.

“Time is not working against you. Time is on My Side. Follow Me.”

DebraIn Christ,

If you would like Rivers of Eden Ministry to come to your home group, church, or gathering please comment below, or contact us on the Contact Page or on Twitter. Read Our Timeline to get better acquainted with me.

Hidden In Plain Sight (1)

Green DoorHidden in plain sight. Seems to contradict itself.  How can something be hidden, yet in plain sight? How is that possible?

Well, it happens all around us, every day. Planets were discovered that had been there all along but were actually hidden in plain sight? Voila – one day they were just seen. Been there all along, unseen – then, there they are, found by people whose eyes were opened to SEE at the right time.

How about when you are looking for something, can’t find it, keep looking, don’t find it and get frustrated? Then suddenly, perhaps a few minutes or hours later, it shows up, having been there all along. Where did it go? Or had it been there all along but was hidden because of our inability to actually see what we were looking for?

So, what about Jesus since He is my reality – my way, truth and life.

Jesus came to His own and His own knew Him not. He was hidden in plain sight, until the right time. Then He was seen by those whose eyes were opened.

John 1:9-12 That was the true Light which gives light to every man coming into the world.10 He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. 11 He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. 12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God

Jesus moved in time, sensitive to the Father’s voice and heaven’s directive, He was in the world but the world, for a time, did not see Him. Along the way, walking in His destiny, some eyes opened to SEE but even in that moment, heaven originated the action.

Matthew 16:15-16 He said to them, “ But who do you say that I am?”16 Simon Peter answered and said, “ You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.

SpiralJesus walked in an acute sense of timing. Why? He was in time and totally obedient to the Father’s directive, submitted to His way and His destiny, never hurried or rushed. Time was on His side and even though hidden while in plain sight, He was not hidden from the Father in heaven. He knew that to walk in time contrary to the sound of heaven would not be wise for the Father’s purpose and plan for His life.

Jesus knew that to be revealed in time was very important. His life started with a divine placement in time:

Galatians 4:4-5 But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.

When His disciples tried to convince Him that there was no time like the present and to just go ahead and move out, He rebuked them:

John 7:2-9 Now the Jews ’ Feast of Tabernacles was at hand. 3 His brothers therefore said to Him, “ Depart from here and go into Judea, that Your disciples also may see the works that You are doing. 4 For no one does anything in secret while he himself seeks to be known openly. If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.” 5 For even His brothers did not believe in Him.6 Then Jesus said to them, “ My time has not yet come, but your time is always ready. 7 The world cannot hate you, but it hates Me because I testify of it that its works are evil. 8 You go up to this feast. I am not yet going up to this feast, for My time has not yet fully come.” 9 When He had said these things to them, He remained in Galilee.

When I started concentrating on the beauty of time in Christ, I realized that I, along with you, are placed in time for such a time as this. This revelation is beginning to overwhelm me so I best take it slow and follow Holy Spirit as it is revealed before my spiritual eyes.

Now about me. I have experienced a divine hiddenness over the past years, many years to be exact. I denied it, tried to force my way out of it, got discouraged when people ignored me or rejected me and even fell into depression when I discerned that in this hiddenness I was useless and without purpose. I took the reality of my life being hidden but in plain sight, very disconcerting and deeply disturbing, often feeling rejected and useless. No matter how much I tried, I could not make myself seen. I wish I knew then, what I know now. Things may have gone a bit smoother. But, great lessons are learned from great failures. So life goes on and I am much wiser for the experience.

My focus on this series of blogs: time, hiddenness, being revealed, being in time yet hearing the call of heaven, walking in sync with the sound of heaven, and more. I intend to learn along the way so hope you follow me and share some comments with me as I go forth.

Why focus on this now? Well, Holy Spirit whispered to me the other day:

“Time is not working against you. Time is on My Side. Follow Me.”

DebraIn Christ,

If you would like Rivers of Eden Ministry to come to your home group, church, or gathering please comment below, or contact us here in the comments or Twitter. Read Our Timeline to get better acquainted with our lives.

Sonic Boom – Voices of Truth Part 1

ImageI heard the Lord speak something to me many years ago. I also heard the Lord speak this to me again a few days ago. He simply said: “Sonic Boom”.  Let me define it and then follow me on the journey in this word. Take your time reading it and let it sink in, hearing it by the Spirit.

As a little girl, growing up in Chicago, there were many summer days when I heard a sonic boom pierce the atmosphere above us and shake our house. Here is the breakdown of what happened in that sonic boom.

When an airplane travels through the air, it produces sound waves. If the plane is traveling slower than the speed of sound (the speed of sound varies, but 700 mph is typical through air), then sound waves can propagate ahead of the plane. If the plane breaks the sound barrier and flies faster than the speed of sound, it produces a sonic boom when it flies past. The boom is the “wake” of the plane’s sound waves. All of the sound waves that would have normally propagated ahead of the plane are combined together so at first you hear nothing, and then you hear the boom they create. (www.howstuffworks.com)

The plane is moving through the air traveling faster than the speed of sound. This plane breaks the sound barrier and produces a boom when it flies past it. The boom is the evidence of the effect of the plane breaking the sound barrier. This sound is loud and penetrating. You cannot avoid hearing it. Now, what am I talking about?

When voices of truth are sent forth by God, their words will flow from the heavenly realm, imbued with an eternal weight of glory. These words are light accompanied by sound, which will break the sound barrier here on earth and cause a sonic boom in the Spirit, which will impact the natural. As a company of people rise up to speak God’s words, words that are spirit and life, these words will be sent for a purpose from the eternal realm. According to Jeremiah, God watches over His word to perform it. It also says this in Isaiah:

Isaiah 55:11 So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. NKJV

ImageLike that airplane, our words of truth in Christ break the sound barrier of the natural realm and fly faster than the speed of sound and produce a sonic boom in the spirit. When one voice is speaking, there is power. When a company of people called to speak truth in Christ speak, truth will shake, and agitate and dismantle whatever is in its path.

There are a myriad of voices in the Body of Christ today bringing forth a sound that is birthed on earth and carries very little impact in the spirit. Words compete for attention and actually hit up against each other constantly in debate and argument. Words flow forth to defend positions and to enforce doctrine. Words also flow forth that are nebulous and vague with little substance.

In these transitional waters of birthing voices of truth that will speak for God (Read the Vision), there are many in process right now. We are learning. We are listening. We are waiting to hear and speak words that hold wisdom, grace, authority, and life. I believe that I am in these waters with many of you, counting the cost to follow Jesus Christ obediently and wholeheartedly with all love and passion. Speaking the truth in Christ or saying nothing at all! 

“Has God indeed said……” – Part 12 – Living In A Hut

ImageThe woman walked back to the hut from the Palace, each step filled with both anticipation and apprehension. Anticipation opened her eyes to see that her life mattered to God, that her life would be abundant and free. At the same time, apprehension created a tension within her  interjecting  doubt into her life.  Perhaps all she had encountered was just a façade and nothing would change. God’s words of love and life swirled around her as she walked. She saw them before her, but did not actually grasp them fully. She believed God while still struggling inside with fear that it would all disappear as fast as it came. “Is this real? she thought. Why now? Can I believe this?

As she walked, she continued to whisper to herself, Hes been listening to me. All along, Hes been there. So whats this tension in me? Why cant I just believe it and let all the rest go?

Even with His revelation close at hand, her mind was a whirlwind of things that had occurred in the past. Despite her encounter with God, she could not put the past to rest. There were still questions within her. Why did I have to go through all this? Why did He wait so long?

She remembered times of intense weeping before God, truly believing that He had forgotten about her. There were times when her cries only seemed to be lost in an eternal void of nothingness, times when she did not know He was there at all. She shuddered inside at the thought of her life and how it had been. She did not want to go back to that place ever again. Again she questioned Why this tension within me? Peace alongside doubt. Love alongside fear? This puzzled her a bit but she kept on walking.

ImageShe was totally unaware that there was one more question that she would have to face that day before she reached the hut. Hiding in the shadows was another being, waiting to speak words of fear. He would ask one more question to her. Unwilling to let her go, he wanted to take one last shot with a question that he had used throughout all of time to paralyze those who belonged to God. This question was the question that he used to format a person’s mind and heart to keep them focused on their fears, their unbelief and their doubt. He masterfully used this question anytime the woman would grieve in the midst of her painful circumstances, thinking that God Himself had abandoned her, leaving her with a hopelessness that consumed her.

Genesis 3:1 NKJV Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field, which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, Has God indeed said..

This is a question that is subtly spoken, forming us and fashioning us in fear in time. The woman did not know it but everything in her life had brought her to this point. She would now confront this question head on. This question would bring confrontation in the midst of her weakness. She would look at her life and see quite clearly that unless God intervened, she had nothing.

“Has God indeed said? She was jolted into fear by this question. The words saturated the atmosphere all around her. Has God indeed said?

Wheres that coming from? she thought. In hearing that question, her thoughts were diverted away from truth back into the lies that questioned God’s faithfulness. This question challenged the very character of God. The woman began to agree with the lie. Fear gripped her quickly. It had really not been conquered but only challenged this day. Now it had exposed its plan and purpose.  She spoke in frustration, What if this is all a lie? What if I believe all of these words and then nothing? Nothing! Nothing! Nothing at all happening – again. Ill be worse off than I was before. I cant go there again. I wont go there again.

She began to walk fast in response to the unsettling fear within her. Peace suddenly dissipated and vanished right around her.

How can things change so suddenly, in a moment of time? she questioned.

Then the unthinkable happened. In fear, she began to agree with the question, speaking it out loud adding her own doubts. All the while in the shadows the creature laughed thinking to himself Shes an easy one. I didnt think it would be this easy. And right after that encounter. This is too good!

ImageWith each step, the questions intensified within her.

Has God said that my life is valuable? Where was He all those years?

Has He said that He never leaves me or forsakes me? What a joke! How can I forget those times of feeling so alone and forgotten?

Breathless and fearful, she spoke again agreeing with the lie.

Has God said that peace is my reality? How do I believe that?

Has He said that life is abundant? This is life? These years of being forgotten, humiliated and shamed as others taunted me with their favor.

Is He  faithful?

Suddenly her words collided with her fear and the desperation of her heart was there, right before her eyes. I cant go back there. I wont go back there. I cant,” she cried. 

God watched her. The creature lurking in the shadows watched her. This stronghold in her life of believing lies over Truth had drawn her into a life of desolation for many years. Today was the turning point. Pain is inevitable before a breakthrough. 

What if this is all a lie? What if nothing changes? the woman said with passion. How can I live like that again? I am dead inside. Theres nothing left in me. This is not living. This is not life. Please…” She begged with all of her might. Help me.

She was empty. She could barely breathe. I cant fight anymore. Im so tired Lord. Whatever………….whatever you want, I give you my life. If nothing changes, I want your peace. I need your peace. If my life is lived forever in that miserable hut, I want You. I trust You. You know me through and through and yet somehow, I never really believed that. I trust you Lord, with everything.

ImageTrust – this was the stronghold. Those words exploded into the atmosphere, challenging the darkness and seeing it dissipate and vanish.  The creature disappeared. The lies were dismantled. His question lost all control in her life that day by these simple words spoken by the woman. “I trust You.” It was so simple and had been there all along but she never realized it. It was all a matter of trust. 

One Question – Part 9 – Living in a Hut

Image“My daughter, why are you here?”

God asked this question to the woman to open her heart to the reality of His love for her. Each time the question was asked, though, the sound reverberated within her very being, causing pain. It was as if she was imploding from within as walls of opposition came falling down all around her until it appeared there would be nothing left for her to hide behind. 

The woman began to think of other questions that were asked to expose hearts. God called to Adam asking, “Where are you?” Then to Peter, “Do you love me?” And to Paul, “Why do you persecute me?” To Hagar, “What do you fear?” To Jeremiah, “What do you see?”

The woman stood in one place, facing one question. And then she asked herself some questions.

Image“How do I answer this? What does He want? Doesn’t He already know? Doesn’t He see?”

God knew the secret places in the woman’s heart where she was hiding in fear. His question had purpose. The simplicity of the question held few words but each word pierced deeper and deeper with truth, light, and life.

She suddenly stopped asking her questions and began to repeat His question to her over and over.

“Why are you here?”

“Why are you here?”

“Why are you here?”

 Suddenly a powerful pain hit her heart and her heart resounded with this question again.

“Why am I here? Why……..am…….I……..here?”

From the depths of her heart, a torrent of words betrayed an inner reality that she had avoided looking at for some time now. She could not stop the flow of words coming forth from within her.

 “I am lonely. Tired. Weary. Hurting. Scared. Disappointed. Discouraged. Angry”

Her “I am” statements defined her, formed her, and flowed from her honestly this day. Her honesty with a God that unconditional loved her would set her free. This reality was better expressed through her than repressed within her.  As the Lord listened to her, His heart was moved with compassion yet at the same time being unmoved by her answers. He again cut to the heart with that one question.

“My Daughter, why are you here?”

ImageGod is relentless in asking questions for the pure intent of opening up a heart so wide so that, His love can pour into it like a vast ocean, filling her up with Himself.

The woman could only be silent after the outpouring of her “I am” statements. She was shaky, a bit dazed, and out of balance. It was as if she was so overwhelmed by her own answers that the answers themselves surprised her. Each word described the pain in her heart.

Suddenly she felt so weak. She saw herself in a vision looking in the mirror at a person whom she did not even know anymore. Her own wholeness seemed to be marred by the cracks she saw in the mirror that distorted her own image. This was her reality. She ran from this reality for so long that in her life, this reality was accepted as truth, when in fact it was a lie. A greater reality was about to be revealed to her in Christ.

She began to quietly answer His question. This time, it was as if she had lost her breath and could only breathe out her innermost feelings.

“Lord, I am – lonely, so lonely. My days go on forever and it seems that I am invisible. No one actually sees me or knows that I am here, right here, right now, unless they see me as they want to see me. I can be in a room and still be lonely.

Lord, I am – tired, so tired. I have been pushing and straining for so long in life, just to avoid having to look at my reality that I am tired. Tired of life, Lord.

I am – weary.  I never feel at rest Lord, or at peace. I always sense that I am missing something, losing something.

I am – hurting.  Lord. I am wondering if this is all there is to life. I am wondering if you have forgotten me. There are days when I barely know you are there Lord. Days, hours where the silence in my own life is as if I am standing in a barren desert.

ImageLord, I am scared. I am frightened. I am fearful. Why is that Lord?

 I am disappointed. So disappointed that it seems that life is passing me by and my dreams are fading, my hope is fading and I live in a void, in a mundane hut.

I am so very discouraged when I see people moving around me and ahead of me at lightening speed as if life was tailored to meet their success and favor with more success and more favor. How can I keep up? How can I even come close?

I am angry. I am so angry with you Lord. Why? Why is this happening after all I have been through in life? Why? I am sooooo angry. Why do you let this happen over and over and over?”

At the end of it all, when there was nothing left inside of her, she simply breathed.  What then took place was very powerful. She felt as if she was there but not there and placed into a void of inner silence, a deep abiding place right there in the midst of the Palace where it was only her and God.  It was as if she was at the very center of God’s heart. This place was silent, except for the consistent beating of peace and love. There was no avoiding God in this place. It was as if it was just her and God. No one else. Yet she could not move. She could barely breathe.