The Power of Imagination Captured for the Cause of Truth

“Lewis demonstrates the power of an imagination which has been captured for the cause of truth.” C.S. Lewis – His Life & Thoughts Terry Glaspey

16094430832_535298c313_zLewis’ imagination flowed through His work. The fantasy and beauty of Narnia manifests the eternal truth of Jesus Christ in the flow and form of the movie. The power of imagination is wonderful. It takes me to a glorious place in the Spirit where I find myself entering into the story. Isn’t that what it is all about? I enter the story and my life narrative is transformed. .

“He presented many of the classic themes of Christian doctrine in a new and imaginative way. Lewis has created a world believable in its own right, and yet has illustrated Christian themes in that world in such a way that they seem fresh and unexpected to those reared in the “Christianized’ Western culture. They have a reality all their own.” (Glaspey- C.S. Lewis-His Life & Thoughts 49)

I get it. When I read this paragraph, my spirit leapt inside. To speak in stories, experiences, or parables undergirded with Biblical truth and eternal truth in creative ways. That’s it for me and that is what is forming in Rivers of Eden. We seem to be on the edges with just a bit of understanding but Holy Spirit is graciously guiding us in the right direction.

When we ministered in Kenya, we created an environment in Holy Spirit that seemed to resonate with the glory of eternity. I spoke words of spirit, life and truth. I moved outside the context of teaching from a formal, predictable stance. I knew what I wanted to convey and trusted Holy Spirit to capture the imagination of people for the cause of truth.

The words pulsed through the atmosphere and ushered in a heavenly glory. The words formed a reality of their own right before my eyes. The kingdom was in our midst. I did not have to explain it for it revealed itself through the creative expression of Christ in me. The words opened up the people’s spirits and when they surrendered to eternity, Jesus ministered to many.

Old Book FlowerI demonstrated the power of my imagination, which was captured for truth, Jesus Christ. You see, sometimes the beauty of the Word is often displaced by our own ability to always want to make it make it understood or meet the needs. Leaders take it upon themselves to micromanage the Holy Spirit and to orchestrate the flow in their own wisdom. The atmosphere is then stripped of glory and the people are stripped of their imagination. I don’t try to analyze the spiritual atmosphere or try to meet the needs of the people. I prepare, pray and mediate and the flow in Holy Spirit. I want to just surrender to Holy Spirit and allow myself to be a vessel of glory.

When I watch the Narnia movies or read the books, I do not engage with them through only through my mind/intellect. If I did that, I would miss the overarching beauty of story. I allow the words and images to touch my imagination. They take me into a place where my heart is then engaged to see Christ and to know Him. That is what is needed today in the Body of Christ – to allow people to engage with the beauty of Scripture in ways that require courage on the parts of leaders to go off the grid of tradition.

To capture the imagination for the cause of truth requires us to be brave and courageous. Released from fear of man, may we write and speak from a sense of identity, infused with creativity in Christ. May we flow outside the boundaries of what only our mind can comprehend to places in Holy Spirit that open up wide vistas of spiritual experience in Christ. May we flow in word and spirit so that the reality of kingdom is alive in Christ in our midst. Creativity abounds in Christ.

Debra

In Christ,
Debra Westbrook

Rivers of Eden Ministry

Prophecy in the Way called “It Is Finished!”

To repent is to change your way of thinking. There is a barrage of noise out there that continually prompts us to repent to produce right action in our lives to be more acceptable to God. The focus is on the right action as opposed to what we already have in Christ – right being. To strive to be better in order to receive God’s approval negates the finished work of the cross.

How does one repent to be better? Do I run to altar calls consistently challenging me to cry out, to pray more, to work more, to study harder in order to present myself approved before God? That is a way and that way is called “never enough.” I used to walk that way. I prophesied from that way – into people’s lives, into churches, into nations, into everything around me. Why? Because my own path was forged on a way called “never enough” – never coming into the revelation of God’s grace in Christ in the finished work of the cross. My journey is changing day by day in Christ’s unfolding revelation to me and through me.

To repent is to change your way of thinking, not to produce moral action or improved behavior but first and foremost to change my way of thinking about Christ Jesus. Who He is. What He does. How He moves. How He lives. The reality of God’s love in Christ that flows in my life in Holy Spirit. A glorious salvation – my life in Christ. To repent, to change my way of thinking in Christ will bring transformation into my life.

I can only prophecy from this way called “It is finished.” Jesus is the Way. This way is the person of Christ, the way of life in Christ and He Himself is the path that is every expanding day by day. This way does not look for more to do, greater ways to achieve, and more ways to be accepted. This way walks in the unforced rhythms of His grace.

Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me––watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill–fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly. (Matthew 11:28-30 The Message)

On my pathway out of religion into an awakening to know Christ, I see a pattern. I don’t want to know about Him or what denominations say He is through ascribing to selective doctrines. Not to even know Him through a constant mixture of grace and law, which dominates the prophetic on many fronts. First, I eschew all the notions of becoming or striving, which propels me into a constant whirlwind of receiving based upon my performance. I simply walk in seeing Him, Christ Jesus and in knowing Him through a revelation of Holy Spirit.

However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you. (John 16:13-15 NKJV)

In this reality of grace and glory, I then begin to see and take hold of purpose, plan, passion and path for my life. I am created to BE in Christ and to flow in His workmanship for my life, in that order.

For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:10 NKJV)

My prophetic voice is changing. I prophesy while walking in the Way of the person of Christ. It is a way called “It is finished.” That is the Good News. How am I starting to walk in this, sloughing off all religious mixture of law and grace? I simply focus on Jesus and filter all I hear, read and see through Him.

I am personally mediating on God’s eternal purpose in Christ, and therefore in me. Where do I flow from that eternal purpose in time? How do I prophesy that life into other people, aligning their life with this reality? How do I walk this out as I manifest His grace and glory through my life?

Let me give you a simple example. Hopefully it will not be askew or off course but this is how my mind thinks. I think of Apple – my MAC, my iPad, and my iPhone – all in sync. Apple soars into the realm of impossibility and hopefully will continue to do that. Its employees, for the most part, seek to be involved and integrated into something bigger than themselves. They have passion and purpose and direction. Why then, if this is possible for Apple, do Christians get earth-bound, needs based, bogged down into religion rather than walking in the reality of someone infinitely greater than any earthly kingdom can build? As Christians we must dream and launch out into risks and live in the Spirit. There is eternal purpose in Christ but how do I see it when I am bogged down by the mundane that is currently pervasive in Western Christianity?

To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ; to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places, according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him. Therefore I ask that you do not lose heart at my tribulations for you, which is your glory. (Ephesians 3:8-13 NKJV)

Prophecy will flow from within me as I walk in the reality of the expanding revelation of God’s eternal purpose in Christ Jesus. I am just getting started here. Isn’t it time we look outside of our circumstances, our situations, our own earthly lives and gaze upon Him who will give meaning to it all? I am moving out of prophetic mixture into grace and glory. Consumed with Christ. Still moving, still processing, enjoying the journey.

In Christ,
Debra Westbrook

Debra NapaThis expanding revelation is what Marvin and I are bringing to the table of the Lord. Will we gather a people? Will we bring truth and healing to the nations? Yes, to it all. Rivers of Eden Ministry is called to challenge people to live a prophetic life of creativity, revelation and intimacy in Christ. I look forward to hearing from you, allowing us the opportunity to minister in the grace and love of Christ in your gathering, church, home group or conference.  Currently we are planning a trip to Kenya in August in which we are looking forward to establishing new relationships with leaders for a Kingdom purpose. Contact us on Facebook or Twitter for more information.

Story Week – Part 3/5 A Young Man with an Ear to Hear – Discordant Sounds

Subliminal sound strikes deep and prides itself on its consistency to wear a person down. That is exactly what the universal sound intended to do in the young man.

Constantly hearing a mantra of hopelessness, the young man would often repeat to himself exactly what the universal sound was saying. “It is what it is.” In the young man’s mind, thoughts of acceptance and escapism worked side by side to keep him from hearing the voice of the I AM. Rather than confront the universal sound head on, he simply retreated from it, yet did not bother to try to defeat it. He was tired and weary. So, in his retreat he disengaged from its reality and escaped into another reality that was more tolerable to him, but equally subversive.

Light TextureThere was a source to the sound that played out in words pummeling the mind of the young man to get his focus off centered from Christ and onto the enemy’s lies and deceptions. It is demonic in nature. It is discordant in essence.

The discordant sound of the enemy lacks harmony and unity. It sustains an atmosphere of conflict, divergence, and confliction. That is what the enemy wanted to draw the young man into – a discordant sound. A spirit of death masks this sound. It will kill dreams in a life filled with promise and hope. It will abort destinies that can change history. It is not compliant but forceful in its own right.

It is illusive in nature and captures the minds and hearts of young men everywhere on the planet. Lyrics of death, visual media that entangles the heart in violence or worse yet, apathy. Rage and anger that lie dormant waiting to be healed in Christ but instead fueled by the discordant sound, finding its expression in the young man’s life. These sounds pull on him with a tight grip. These subversive sounds attempt to kill destiny and purpose in Christ.

God, the great I AM, in Christ Jesus by the power of Holy Spirit takes no heed to subliminal sounds. Truth and perfection in Christ orchestrates and ordains all the sounds on earth. He does not retreat from discordance. By His hand, He lets them play out until that perfect moment when He interjects the sound above all sounds. The sound of goodness, purity, wholeness and healing. The sound of love, destiny and purpose.

Walking towards the lightGod Himself waits in the midst His revelation of light, life and truth – ready to pour forth into the young man’s heart when all other sounds bring him to the point of intimate extraction. Extraction into what? Extraction into the discordant sound itself. This evil sound is not willing to just come in the young man’s life to exploit and divert. This evil source waits to conquer and pronounce itself lord.

God draws young men out who are willing to look at the source of the sound and be willing to move into another way, a more excellent way. This comes at a crucial point in the young man’s life when all seems out of reach, without reason and purpose. Only truth can lead Him away and only light can bring a young man into its presence.

There is indeed a clashing of sounds issuing forth in this day. Make no mistake to think it is cultural, environmental or sourced in the natural. It is a clashing of kingdoms to capture a generation of young men who are destined to do mighty exploits for Jesus Christ. This is indeed truth and truth is absolute – absolutely engaging, absolutely life changing and absolutely able despite all of hell trying to block its path.

Jesus declares loud and strong into the heart of a generation held captive by the discordant sound of chaos. He speaks with simplicity and grace. He speaks in the midst of light, love and life. He speaks.

In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. (John 1:4-5 NKJV)

It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life. (John 6:63 NKJV)

Jesus said to him, “ I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (John 14:6 NKJV)

The clear sound of Christ coming forth in the midst of darkness. There is no reason for any who are concerned about the condition of young men everywhere to be dismayed or in despair for Christ is alive and speaks forth in clarity and truth. Even though at this point in his life, the young man does not appear to be listening, yet the words of life pierce through the darkness, intent on reaching his heart. Do we underestimate the power of light in Christ to overcome and be victorious in a generation that seems in many ways to be held captive by a discordant sound? Christ has triumphed over principalities and darkness. We only need recognize that the battle we fight has already been won even in the midst of knowing that the darkness does not concede that easily.

More to come…..

In Christ, Debra Westbrook

DebraRivers of Eden Ministry is called to challenge people to a life of creativity, revelation and intimacy in Christ. Marvin and I look forward to hearing from you, allowing us the opportunity to minister in the grace and love of Christ in your gathering, church, home group or conference.  Currently we are planning a trip to Kenya in July in which we are looking forward to establishing new relationships with leaders for a Kingdom purpose. Contact us on Facebook or Twitter for more information.