Monday, 11 December 2017

Kirsty's Testimony

Kirsty Gerlach is an amazing woman who recently got diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease.
She shares her testimony with us and it will challenge and inspire you and lead you to Jesus.
Please take the time to listen to her story.

Saturday, 18 November 2017

The fires too hot!

Sometimes the things we go through we think aren't God, and whether they are or not God, God uses everything for our good, (if we allow it). And often we are tempted to walk out or walk away from God and His people in the process when things become too tough.  We don't know how to handle it, we think all sorts of things that don't line up with the bible, with truth, we question, we doubt, we blame, whatever it is that is being challenged in our life when it becomes too hard, we are often tempted to quit or to walk away from the situation/s that is/are causing pain.  I know I have several times spat the dummy so to speak, in my marriage, in my church, with my daughter, in relationships, when I have wanted to quit and walk away.  But thankfully the Lord holds me, I have my bad day and then something will come that will encourage me to keep going.  A word in season, someone encouraging me, a reminder of the good things, whatever it is there is often something that will come to help me keep going.  I have found there is always enough grace for the day, maybe not for tomorrow - yet - but for today, for the next minute, the next hour.  Like bread being baked in the oven, if the bread came out half way through it wouldn't be complete and it would be uneatable. So I encourage you to not give up but keep going in the Lord.  
1 Peter 1:6,7 says;
"In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer various trials, so that the authenticity of your faith—more precious than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ."

Oh Lord help us to walk through the fire so that the testing of our faith may prove genuine resulting in praise and glory to you.  Give us your grace and your strength for today and whatever situations may arise today.  Thank you Lord.

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Today's complacency will lead to tomorrows captivity

While Jim & I were in bible college training to go on to the mission field, one thing we learnt was that we needed to be continual learners.  And over time I have found if I am not learning, if I am not growing in the Lord in some area of my life, then more than likely I have stepped into a place of pride without even realising it or have become 'comfortable' and content with where things are at.

To be a continual learner is to position yourself that you are continually growing, being challenged in your thinking, perhaps being called to step out in something you have never done before that you know God is speaking to you about.  It's a place of questioning yourselves "why am I not seeing what I believe for yet?" in the Lord, those promises perhaps that He has already spoken about, and then stepping into them in faith trusting that God will lead the way.

Samuel Rodriguez say's "Today's complacency will lead to tomorrows captivity."

I have found this statement to be true in my life, the things I have become complacent in are the things that hinder me or hold me back from stepping out in the other things that the Lord has yet for me to take hold of in Him.
For example for me the Lord has been talking to me for several years about writing books, I have had many confirming words that I should be stepping into it and that it would provide funds for us and yet I don't know how to do it or seem to find the time to do it.  We daily still struggle for finances while in ministry and yet God has shown a way in which finances can come.  So I somehow need to make the time, find the people who can help me step into this arena by faith, gain the wisdom and understanding, stop being complacent and putting it as less a priority than everything else and then we might see the situation change in our finances.

Prov 3:13  "Blessed are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding."  Often there are things we don't know what to do or how to do it, but there is wisdom and understanding all around us, in people who have done it before, in the word of God, in studying, whatever it may be, step out and find the wisdom that helps you.
Prov 1:23-33 "For the waywardness of the simple will kill them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them, but whoever listens to me will live in safety and be at ease, without fear of harm."
If I become complacent and do nothing about what the Lord may be speaking to me about then we shouldn't be complaining when our situations don't change.

I believe God is wanting us to step out of the comfortable boxes we are familiar with, whatever they may be and surrender ourselves to him and what He is saying trusting that He will lead the way as we step out in faith.  So I encourage you, don't let todays complacency be tomorrow's captivity, be a continual learner in the Lord.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

patient in affliction

This morning in prayer the words "Patient in affliction" came from the Holy Spirit.

Patience is something a long time ago I asked that the Holy Spirit would teach me and the way He has seemed to have done this is through affliction, through trials and testing of my faith, through learning to love people even when rejected by them or misunderstood, or persecuted.
But the joy that comes in the growth in the fruit of patience, the 'rest' and 'peace' that comes through learning to be patient in affliction, is one I am thankful for as I start to see an unshakeable faith coming as I learn to trust in the Lord to deal with the issues I can't deal with, to trust in the Lord to work things through and see His hand come into situations and circumstances.

James 1:4 talks about the fruit of patience being one that we will be lacking nothing "perseverance must finish its work in us so that we may be mature and complete, not lacking anything" but that perseverance comes with the cost of learning, to wait, to trust, to entrust, to hope, to continue to believe in spite of where things seems to be at in the moment.

Romans 12:9-13 "Love must be sincere.  Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.  Be devoted to one another in love.  Honour one another above yourselves.  Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervour, serving the Lord.  Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.  Share with the Lord's people who are in need.  Practice hospitality".......

So I encourage you and myself this morning in the Lord to continue to be patient in affliction, waiting, believing, hoping, trusting in all that the Lord has said he will do knowing that in due season we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. (Gal 6:9).

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Hesitation often causes accidents

The other day Jim was driving the car and began crossing an intersection then decided he couldn't do it as a car was coming toward him and so he backed back, unfortunately touching the car's number plate behind him as he too had moved forward.

Many of us are stepping out and believe God has spoken, but when things start to come toward us decide to step back into what we think is the place of safety, but in so doing find things have changed and we cannot go back to the place we once were.

Fear often causes us to go back instead of forward and for me in the past when we have stepped up into the new things that we believe the Lord has said, often something will come that will try to intimidate us, make us think we have made the wrong decision, that encourage us to go back the way we were going, but in the Lord we keep going from glory to glory, advancing and not retreating.
It's in the hesitation that those around us may get hurt.

Often when we are unsure of the way forward and we step into trying to work it out logically, reasoning things out in our heads rather than in the spirit, which first prompted us to move originally and when we do this there are many good reasons for not moving into it but which may not be of faith or what the Lord has been saying.

So I encourage you today and I do myself in the Lord daily, I cannot go back the way I came, I press on toward the goal of which Christ has called me, I believe by faith and not receive the doubt and questioning that would like to come in its place.  I choose to believe and move into knowing that God works all things together for good, no matter what it may look like now or come to look like in the future, but trusting in God that He knows the beginning and the end and that He directs my steps.

Monday, 14 August 2017

Soften my heart Lord....I need a miracle.

Those in Egypt who were taken and led out of slavery with Moses and crossed the Red Sea saw the miracles of God, they saw their God working in mighty ways before their very eyes and yet not long from where they saw these things take place, they come into quarrelling and times of testing and in this place they forget the miracles, they forget the bigness of their God and all he can do and has done and they harden their hearts.

Many of us through times of testing, through trials, through believing for things and not yet seeing it happen, find ourselves unintentionally hardening our heart to what we have seen or know that our God can do.  We stop moving in faith in which we first did at the beginning in our relationship with the Lord and we end up living along like all those around us and accepting our states in life and no longer step out in faith on the bigger things in which the Lord has called us to.  Perhaps we have stepped out in faith before and God 'seemingly' didn't come through the way we thought he would, or perhaps we think we heard wrong or for whatever reason we no longer step out the way we once did.
And in this place we have 'hardened our heart' as it says in Psalm 95:7
 "Today, if only you would hear his voice,
Do not harden your hearts as you did at Meribah 
as you did that day at Massah in the wilderness,
where your ancestors tested me,
they tried me, though they had seen what I did.
(Mariah means quarrelling,   Massah means testing)

Today I believe the Lord wants to soften your heart to believe again, to believe again for the miraculous, to believe again for those dreams and promises He has spoken into your lives, to rise up once again and to step out in them, not in what you can do but remembering who our God is and that He is able to exceedingly and abundantly do more than you think ask or imagine.
Many have become tired and weary through the past year or so but it is a new season, it is a new day and to step out in faith again, not to give up.
Recently I have picked up a book by Rolland Baker called "Keeping the Fire" and he brings out 5 main points which he believes has kept their heart in revival, which through our lives can testify to be true and in these encourage us to put ourselves into a place that will stretch us again, that will put us in a place of dependancy in God again for the miraculous.  His 5 points are:
1.  Find God
2.  Depend on Miracles
3.  Go to the Least
4.  Suffer for Him, if necessary
5.  Rejoice in the Lord.
I encourage you to pick up his book, its a small easy book to read.

Its a new day, lets not rest in our current positions but to keep on pressing in to all that God has for us in Him and for His glory and in so doing you will be encouraged as you see the testimonies come because of the steps of faith that you step out in, it may be talking to your neighbour where God has helped in the past with a similar situation they might be walking through.  But lets arise people and shine, so that the glory of God may be revealed and we will be refreshed and encouraged once again.

Saturday, 24 June 2017

Yokes of slavery?

Pondering this morning how easily we put 'yokes' of slavery or burdens upon people in our thinking, in our demands, in our expectations and yet it is a two way giving and receiving that happens - we can place a yoke upon someone but they have to pick it up in order to receive it.
We put yokes of bondages on people when we expect them to do a certain thing, behave a certain way, when we judge them in our hearts, when we decide what is right or wrong and start walking out of 'law'.  It is so easy to do with one another without even realising what we are doing.

Yet on the other side we as individuals have to learn to walk in a place of freedom and like the scripture says in Gal 5 "don't let yourselves be burdened again with a yoke of slavery".  People can put things upon us, but in Christ we are set free, we are not subject any longer to yokes of slavery unless we allow it, unless we receive it.

So individually we all have a part to play -  as a people to try to live in the grace that has been given to us, that we can give that grace to others and not place yokes of burdens on people and allow people to live their own lives in the Lord and in what the Holy Spirit will teach them and for ourselves not to pick up things that are not ours to pick up.

Because of this, I see many christians walking away from other christians because of the various yokes that 'seemingly' and 'mistakenly' get put on one another and yet I believe when we all take responsibility for our parts of giving and receiving yokes, we can all learn to live in freedom in the place the Lord has with those people and love one another as we should, giving and receiving grace and forgiveness, allowing the Lord to change us all on the journey together.

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Regret.....Pass on what you have.

This morning I had a dream of a woman who was a warrior, who was well used to going into battles and one day someone gave her a jewel case with some ancient jewels in it, a huge ruby that was set in an intricate gold setting, and other jewels that were beautiful that were being passed down to her and that had originally come from someone before her.
She put them away in a safe place and went out into battle again for it only to be her last battle.

In looking back her regret was that she never told anyone where the jewels were before she went out to battle that she was given and so they were going to be lost and no longer being passed on, hidden forever in history, the beauty of what she had been given lost and of no value.

I believe there is a word in this dream that I saw this morning.
Many of us have fought many battles in the spiritual and natural realm and in that we have received jewels from the Lord through the things we have learnt in those battles and the training of which we have been in.  We have taken from those battles spoils of war, lessons learned, wisdom gained and the things we have taken from those battles have made us beautiful, adorned us with jewelry so to speak.
Isaiah 54:11-12  “I will build you with stones of turquoise, your foundations with sapphires.  I will make your battlements of rubies, your gates of sparkling jewels and all your walls of precious stones”.

But the word of warning in this dream is that those things we have gained through those battles is not lost in our death.  That what we have learnt, that the inheritance we have received and been given, is passed on and not lost and for no purpose.
It reminds me of the parable of the talents in Matt 25:14-30 and that the treasure we have received would not be buried unable to be passed on.

In times past it was passed on through stories told to their children, and now through media there are many ways of passing on what we have been given, the spoils of war that we have received, so that it doesn’t get lost.
You could write a blog or a book, sing a song, paint a picture, whatever the media and creativity that the Lord has given you to be able to pass on what he gives you.  It might be simply having a coffee with a friend and sharing what you have learnt.
Whatever the way, I encourage you to consider the inheritance that you have been given in the Lord and through the battles that you have fought and overcome in, that it doesn’t die with you but will be passed on from generation to generation.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Yeah Nah

Reading 2 Cor 1:17 this morning this struck me:
"When I planned this, did I do it lightly?  Or do I make my plans in a worldly manner so that in the same breath I say,  “Yes, yes” and ‘No, no”?
But as surely as God is faithful, our message to you is not “Yes” and “No”…....

V20 For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ.”  And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God."

Are we a people who are constantly making plans lightly and then when our circumstances and situations change then we change accordingly?  
As a people learning to move by the wind of the spirit, what does this look like in respect to the things we say yes to and believe the Holy Spirit has spoken them, but minutes later or perhaps months later, we say the Holy Spirit is no longer in that and move on?
Once upon a time our word was our bond, but these days legal contracts are being drawn up because we can no longer trust a persons word that they will follow through and say and do what they said they would do.   Our Kiwi culture has this saying 'Yeah Nah' as part of its language and humour and yet underneath it all it is undermining our society and the commitment of which we stand behind our yes's and our no's.

One thing that I have learnt in learning to walk in 'freedom' and 'authority' in Christ is that there is greater responsibility that is taken for our actions.   One of those responsibilities is learning to say 'No' and what to say 'Yes' to, so that we do not become 'yoked' to a yoke of slavery.  (Gal 5:1)  Others don't yoke us, we yoke ourselves as we take on things we are not supposed to take on and so learning to say No is a huge part of growing in maturity in Christ.  Also we need to understand the truth behind our 'No' and our 'Yes' because sometimes these come out of simply selfish reasons and not the Lord directing us according to His word.
Matt 5:37 says "Simply let your Yes be Yes and your No be No, anything beyond this comes from the evil one."

We need to be a people who don't make decisions lightly but consult the Holy Spirit in our decision making process and then we can stand firm in faith on the decisions that are made. 2 Cor 1:21 "Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ"

James 1:5  "If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.  But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.  That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does."

When we make our decisions and stepping out on those decisions in faith believing and receiving confirmation that this is what we are to do, then we can stand firm in faith believing that God will work everything together for good and we can trust that God has a purpose in it and that He will get the glory for it.

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

We are ONE in Christ. Lets LOVE those that are different to me.

Recently I had a dream and in this dream people were embarrassed by me in public and only shared at a surface level not to the level I shared, which was at the heart. And in another scenario others shut me out because I was a women and I prayed differently than they did. It broke my heart the way I was treated and I found myself in tears. 
I share this because I have too often been rejected by people in the body of Christ because of various reasons such as those above. 
People, we are one body, all of the same blood, all needed by the other. We may be different from others, we may not pray the same way as others, but we all love the same Jesus and if we are believing for unity in the body of Christ, we cannot afford to be ashamed of others that may be different to us because we are all Christs representatives on the earth, all showing different faucets and parts of His personality. 
Please lets be a people who love one another wholeheartedly and honour others above ourselves as Christ did, who laid his life down for those who didn't deserve it. It has to stop in the body of Christ. We should be a people who celebrate differences, are blessed by the variety of people that God puts in our lives to learn to love. We are called to be a people that walk in truth, and in love, not in judgement, criticism and shunning our neighbour because they are different to ourselves.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Three prophetic words to the 'church'

Last night I saw three pictures that I want to share:

One:  There were a gathering of men who had pulled away from the main bunch of people and were smoking.
Smoking often represents offence and so I believe there are people who have pulled away from church due to offence of whatever nature, perhaps church didn't happen like you expected it to be, perhaps someone said something that hurt you, perhaps someone challenged you with something that you didn't want to address, whatever the reason offence has come into the heart and brought separation.
Prov 18:19  An offended friend is harder to win back than a fortified city.  Arguments separate friends like a gate locked with bars.

If you find yourself pulling back from the church, pulling away from people, you may find that there is some type of offence in your heart.  If you are sitting in an offence, you are actually sitting in unforgiveness and perhaps judgement and in this place you have forgotten the grace that you have received for your mistakes, you have forgotten how much you have been forgiven at the cross because of your sin that separated you from Jesus.  And in so doing are holding people in a place of judgement and unforgiveness.

In the picture I saw myself going after these people and I know for myself I have done this many many many times, gone after the offended brother and tried to bring reconciliation and restoration as the word says to make every effort to keep the unity in the bond of peace.  But I believe the Lord is saying at the moment to let these people go.  If they want to sit in offence and smoke then that is up to them.  I do encourage you however to ask the Lord to help you with whatever offence may be in your heart and to not let it separate you from the flock.  When it does this you are an easy target for the wolf, the worlds thinking on justice to come in and steal what inheritance you have in the Lord and the place in which He has placed you for your protection and growth.  
Prov 19:11  "Sensible people control their temper, they earn respect by overlooking wrongs". (NLT)

Two:  I saw people who had been married getting remarried.
Hosea 2:19-20  "And I will betroth you to me forever.  Yes, I will betroth you to me in righteousness and in justice."
When we get married to a person we make a commitment, a choice, that we will work through whatever challenges that come and yet in this picture I saw and like so much of what is happening in the world, people are getting married, separated, divorced and remarried.
This is not to be so in the church.  In Christ, we have made a decision to be married to Him, we are His Bride, He is our bridegroom.  We have made a commitment to work through the challenges that come.  Actually as I am writing this I see there is a correlation with the above picture that like in 'church' we have made a commitment to be a part of a 'church family' but when we get offended we often walk out of that commitment in search of something else.  We are not working through the challenges that come and hence we are not seeing the fruit that will come in due season, when we have walked through the season that we are in.

I encourage you to be a people of commitment in Jesus, not to be walking in adultery.  Because that is the case when we marry someone and then walk away, we walk in adultery in whatever way that looks like.  Adultery can be in many forms when something becomes greater that what Jesus would have us do.  When other things take the place of Jesus and His word, then we can easily step into adultery.  Last night in church something was brought out by our guest speaker that when we are watching movies or programmes with witchcraft etc in them we are opening up our eye gate to things that are not of the Lords Kingdom, this too can be a form of adultery.

Three:  I saw that there were opportunities there but in distraction of other things it is easy to miss out on the thing that the Lord has for you.

This was a picture for Jim and myself but I share it as I know this is a word for many.  Distractions can easily make us miss what the Lord has in front of us.  There are many things that can distract us, many good things.  In fact in my vision I saw Jim was wanting to buy me a wet suit for underwater diving, but in going and buying the wetsuit we nearly missed the boat that would take us underwater diving.  So often we have a good motive and a good heart to what we are doing, but if it means 'missing the boat' on what the Spirit is doing at the time then I encourage you to let it go and allow the Lord to provide all that you need.  

A prime example of this was last night in our church service, the spirit was moving powerfully but there were problems happening with the overhead and the words getting up on the screen and it was distracting people from the spirit moving.  We have a choice in that moment, to forget the overhead and to 'keep in the spirit' or to get distracted by the frustrations, the things not going right and miss 'what the spirit is doing'.  God is moving all the time and if distractions come in and take the focus from what the Lord is saying or wanting us to do, then I encourage you to ask Him to help you let go of all that would distract you away from what the Lord is doing.  

Another prime example from last nights service, God was moving powerfully but then I asked my guest what He was seeing, and he was seeing some demonic things around the place but I said to Him to look again and see what the Lord was doing and He stopped and looked again and He saw all that the Lord was releasing from Heaven, finance, buildings, dreams, visions, hope etc all being released from the Hand of God. So I encouraged him to release what He was seeing from the Heavens not what He was seeing happening on the 'earth' and things shifted powerfully when he did that.  But we can so easily be distracted by what we are seeing in the natural on the 'earth' that we miss out on what the Lord is doing.   In seeing what the Lord was doing we saw several miracles take place in the service.  When we continue to look at Him and not what is happening in the world we get to be partakers of what He is doing in the earth.

1 Chronicles 12:32  "Of the Sons of Issachar, men who understood the times with knowledge of what Israel should do..."
We need to be a people who understand the times and season of what the Lord is doing and move with it and not get distracted by what is happening in the world.

Saturday, 4 February 2017

Now is the time for the power of God

This morning I was woken with a picture of electricity in one room that seemed to go out but then there was electricity in another room that should not have had electricity as there was no connection and yet it was full of electricity.  I felt it was a picture of the power of God of supernatural things taking place that you could not explain. That there had been a little of it in the past to that seemed to go out but now it is about to increase. 

Then the scripture Isaiah 41 was loud and clear in my heart.  So I got up and read Isaiah 41 and it is all about those who worship idols and those who put their trust in the Lord who will be protected.  He encourages his faithful ones to trust in him, with an assurance that he would take their part against their enemies, making them victorious over them, and bring a about a good change of affairs in their circumstances.

In praying into this is what I believe this is what the Lord said to me.

"What you have seen a little of and seemed to go out, is about to explode all around you.  Once a valley of dry bones now coming to life.  Once a place of desert and marshes will now be springs and rivers, pools of living water with all sorts of fish there.  I will do this.  Jehovah is my name.
Every knee will bow and know that I am God.
Come all you who are thirsty, come to the waters and you who have no money, come buy and eat.
You have been waiting patiently, believing, trusting and now I will show myself faithful to you, to all who have waited and trusted in me to come.  Now is the time I will pour out my spirit, now is the time you will see wonders and tribulations, but be not afraid, I am with you and will protect you and show you great and mighty things you do now know."

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Can you leave the washing for someone else to do?

Something the Lord has been speaking to me about recently is leaving people to do what they have been called to do and to step into what I have been called to do.

The other day I had a dream of some friends whose house I was staying at and she left me to do the washing while she went off to do something else, but as she left she felt she needed to come back to me and take over me doing the washing.  It was a control issue in her life as she just couldn't leave me to do it as I was more than capable to do it.  But in the process of her doing this, it meant she missed out on the opportunity that was in front of her.

God was speaking to me to leave people to do what I have given them to do and to move into what He has called me to do.  But for many of us it is very difficult to leave others to do things that have been in your arena to do; they may not do it the same or as well as you could do, but they still can are capable to do it.

Today I was reading about King Uzziah in 2 Chronicles 26 and the Lord showed me some lessons from his life in a similar respect to what he was showing me in the dream.
Verse 4:  "He did what was right in the eye of the Lord, just as his father Amaziah had done.  He sought God during the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God.
Verse 5:  "As long as he sought the Lord, God gave him success.
When the King sought the Lord and lived out of the fear of the Lord he became successful. V15 "His fame spread far and wide, for he was greatly helped until he became powerful.
v16 "But after Uzziah became powerful, his pride led to his downfall".
When he became powerful and successful, pride entered his life and he became unfaithful to the Lord.
Many of us when we think we are doing well, we stop seeking the Lord and we start to do things in our own strength.

It was at this point that Uzziah stepped into doing things he was not called to do.  He entered the temple of the Lord to burn incense on the altar of incense.
V18 "It is not right for you, Uzziah to burn incense to the Lord.  That is for the priests, the descendants of Aaron, who have been consecrated to burn incense.  Leave the sanctuary, for you have been unfaithful; and you will not be honoured by the Lord God."
v19  "Uzziah, who had a censer in his hand ready to burn incense, became angry.  While he was raging at the priests in their presence before the incense altar in the Lord's temple, leprosy broke out on his forehead."
When Uzziah stepped into doing things that were not his to do, he became sick.

Many of us I believe are living in a state of sickness, of stress, of depression etc. because we are not doing what the Lord has called us to do, instead we are doing more than we have been called to do for whatever reason.    Sometimes out of necessity but there may be some areas in our lives we need to change, some priorities we need to change in order to remain in the peace we are called as children of God to live in.  We need to learn to let go of things that are not ours that the Lord has asked us to do.  Speaking from personal experience. 😀
Things that we perhaps are very capable at doing and have been doing, but we need to let go and let others step into what the Lord is calling us to do.  We feel like we are indispensable, but it is at this point that we step into pride.

As a leader I am continually speaking to my people to be training up others and doing yourself out of a job, but this can be difficult if we like the position we are in, or like feeling useful, or perhaps feel comfortable in the place we are in, and we cannot see that there are others that are capable of doing what we can do.  But I have found over the years when people let go, there are always others who will step up.   Often others cannot step up until you step out.  Or perhaps the season for what you were doing has now come to an end. 

So I encourage you today to ask the Lord, I am doing what I should be doing?  What you have called me to do?  Because the Lord never gives us more than we can handle and if we find ourselves run down, burnt out or reacting to stuff more easily than we normally would, take some time and spend with the Lord asking him to help you and to find a way to release you from all the stuff that you have taken on that he has not called you to take on.

For me personally, I am having to learn to delegate and let go if things are not how I would want them to be or the way I have done them.  But they are still getting done, and in fact sometimes they are done better than I could do them 😲  But in so doing, it is releasing me to do what I am called to do and its in that place that I find my peace as I function out of the gifts and callings on my life.

Sunday, 15 January 2017

But wait....its not commitment, but rather 'Faithfulness"

Something we have been working through with in the body of Christ is the difficulty for people to commit to something and to continue in it no matter what comes.  We have found people will walk into something believing God has said it, and yet six months down the track, or when difficulty comes, challenges come, offence comes, it doesn't look as they expected, etc. that commitment and belief that God spoke six months earlier is no longer there and we see people walk out of those commitments they once made believing God had spoken.

So does that mean people didn't seek the Lord in the first place?
Did they hear incorrectly?
So does that mean people sought the Lord but now he is saying something different?
So does that mean I have the right to do whatever I like based on how it feels at the time?
If it feels good then I will do it type thing, but if it doesn't then I am gone?

This has been a real struggle for me in leadership as I have found this on a regular basis that people come into the ministry believing this is where God wants them and then they walk out the door when trials and challenges come their way.  If I did this in my marriage I would no longer be married.  Every relationship is challenged, every call of God is tested.

As I have been pondering this and the blog I wrote near the end of last year, I find the word is not commitment but rather the word should be, "faithfulness".

Faithfulness as defined in the Nelsons Bible dictionary as - dependability, loyalty and stability as it describes God in His relationship to human believers.
Faithfulness as defined by 'google' - the quality of being faithful; fidelity.  Synonyms - loyalty, constancy, devotion, trueness, true-heartness, dedication, commitment, allegiance, adherence.
Faithfulness is a fruit of the spirit that the Lord wants to grow in our lives.
Gal 5:22  "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control."

When Jim and I were called overseas to mission work, there was a phrase that rang in our ears from people as they prepared us for cross cultural mission - "culture shock".
Which means; the feeling of disorientation experienced by someone when they are suddenly subjected to an unfamiliar culture, way of life, or set of attitudes.
Along with this phrase came the expectation that within two years we would 'hit the wall'.  Which meant like in marriage we would get over the 'honeymoon' phase and real life would begin and it would be challenging.

This is often when our 'faithfulness' gets tested - when we are in 'culture shock'.  Its easy to be faithful when things are going well, but when our world views are being challenged, when our culture is being changed, when our attitudes are needing to shift, that is when we really find out where the fruit of faithfulness is in our lives.  

So when Jim and I were told we would 'hit the wall' within two years we decided in our heart right then and there that we would not, because that is not the spirit Christ has given us.  He says, we can do all things through Him who strengthens us.  He says we are called to be overcomers.  He says don't worry about tomorrow and that he would give us enough grace for each day.  And although yes we did face challenges and it was not easy at times, and we wanted to come home and give it all away, we committed ourselves to being faithful to the word of God, to what He had called us to that we knew that we knew this was where God wanted us despite come what may.  We decided to 'stand firm and not let anything move us (1 Cor 12)' as was one of the words God had given us before leaving for the mission field.  We learnt what it was to rely on God's strength and not our own as we cried out to him to uphold us in pain when our only daughter at the age of 10 was in a different country away from us, when challenges faced us that threatened our lives, when relationships were being tested.

So I encourage you to let 'faithfulness' be a fruit in the spirit that is cultivated and grown in your life.  To pray to the Lord to help you be an overcomer in the situations you find yourselves in and to cry out to him for the help that you need and not to look to man but to look to the promises and the words that he has given you, that hold you on course for what He has for you.

Matt 7:12 "In everything, then, do to others as you would have them do to you. For this is the essence of the Law and the prophets. Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the way that leads to life, and only a few find it.…"
   Its easy to walk down the path where many follow, and in the current world view that we live in people walk down the path that 'feels good' and does what they want, this is not the path that the Lord has called his followers to be on.  He calls us to faithfulness, he calls us to be overcomers, he calls us to lay down our lives for others which is the narrow gate but it is one that leads to life and life abundantly as we learn to trust him and to know him and His faithfulness toward us!  He is faithful even when we are faithless 😊

Thursday, 12 January 2017

In childlike faith.... I wait

In childlike faith, I have declared what I have seen.
In childlike faith, I have believed that what I have seen my Papa has no problem in doing.
In childlike faith I have stepped out… but found that doors have been closed - FOR NOW.....
That others around me didn’t see what I saw,
That finances didn’t come to do what I believed in,
That people didn’t stand with me,
That for whatever reason that I blamed everyone else for the state of my heart.

And so day by day in disappointment of spirit, my dream becomes less to what I see in front of me,
Day by day by spirit starts to no longer believe for the ‘big’ vision that the Lord showed me,
Day by day my childlike faith becomes beset by conditions, “if that happens, then I will do this”.
And I find the once full of faith child is putting conditions on the steps of which she takes.

And yet his word says “Those who trust in the Lord will not be put to shame”.
And yet his word says “Those who wait upon the Lord will renew their strength, they will run and not grow weary, the will walk and not be faint”.
And yet his word says “That He is able to do more than I think, ask or imagine”. 
He is the “God of the impossible”.

And so I wait,
And so I watch,
And so I learn to trust that what He says He will do, He will do.

"My time frame is not yours" He says to me.
My thinking says “I am ready”.
His says, “There are still many things for you to learn’.
Day by day I surrender all.
Day by day I learn to walk, waiting, trusting, believing in the impossible of those things on my heart.
Day by day I question and continue to put on the altar the disappointment of my heart.
Day by day I choose to believe His word and stand in faith not on what I have seen but what I believe.
Day by day I come to him in tears and in that place His Holy Spirit renews my heart.

He renews my hopes,
He renews my dreams,
He whispers - keep going, don’t give up,
He encourages me on.

Until I can see with eyes that are willing,
Until I can see that there is something bigger being worked out in the foundations of my faith,
Until I can see that it’s not just about me but about all those he wants to bring alongside me,
Until I can see that He wants ALL the glory, not just some of it,
Until I can see that He is good and His plans are good despite how things may look.
Until I know that He is God and I learn to let go and rest and trust in Him.

And so I wait, with childlike faith being restored, renewed day by day.
And so I wait with eager expectation of what He is going to teach and show me today.
And so I wait and learn to ‘rest’ in Him and that ‘He’ is more than enough without the dream
and vision coming to pass.
That He and His presence is more than enough to satisfy every place in my heart.
That actually I only want Him and Him alone and without the journey of obedience in the day to day, I would not understand that He is the only living water that satisfies every place in my heart.
That the dream and vision is only a bypass of the relationship with Him that can not be surpassed.
That Eternity Life is found in Knowing Him and being Known by Him, not anything I can do for Him and with Him.  And finally I rest…..I believe…… I trust….. with fullness and childlike faith of Heart.