Posts made in November, 2014

In View of God’s Mercy, Give Thanks

Posted on Nov 24, 2014 in Blog Posts, Ministry

Rom. 12:1 – Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies [hearts] as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. Sometimes giving thanks is harder to do than other times.  God tells us to be thankful in all things, but let’s be real.  How often do we successfully do that?  A few years ago, I was really struggling with a situation on the dance team that I was leading and was tempted to quit.  I was tired of dealing with all of the stress, pain, and junk, and I’m sure I was being less than thankful in my heart.  But, one day as I sat there in the prayer room, one of my team members was dancing in the dance square and then just stopped and stood there with her arms up in the air worshiping, and that did it……my heart was undone and moved to repentance. I dropped to my knees and said to the Lord, “You’re worth every sacrifice just to see them worship You.” He then reminded me of a drawing that was given to me earlier in the year.  It was a picture of me holding a large bouquet of roses that represented the dance team and how each of them is a beautiful rose, but how they also have thorns.   As I pondered that picture in my heart with my face to the ground, I heard myself say out loud to the Lord….”You took the thorns for me [on the cross].  I’ll take the thorns for You.”  That moment changed everything.  I knew God had placed me in that position of leadership, and if a little pain, stress, and junk was required of me….well, that was nothing in light of the pain of the cross. When I meditate on the mercy of God, I think about how we were still sinners when God sent His only son to die for us.  He didn’t wait until we deserved it or wanted it, but He did it in the middle of our sin and rebellion – in our stress, pain, and junk – when we didn’t deserve it or even want it.  His heart and His love are so big that He gave and sacrificed everything knowing that He’d get nothing back in that moment.  What mercy.  What love. I don’t know who the “thorns” in your life are today or if you feel you have any thorns.  But, in case you do, my Thanksgiving prayer for you is that you’ll find courage and comfort in God’s mercy today….courage to identify with the sufferings of Jesus, and comfort in His sufferings for you.  For the joy set before Him (YOU), He endured the cross.  You are loved beyond comprehension and you are not alone.  All of heaven is cheering you on, and the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are inside of you empowering you to do what you can’t do on your own. Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.  Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.      Hebrews 12:1-3 May your spirit...

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The Altar of Sacrifice

Posted on Nov 18, 2014 in Blog Posts, Ministry, Prayer, Uncategorized

As I rode on the bus for the hour-long drive to prepare to climb Table Mountain, the story of Abraham and Isaac in Genesis 22 was highlighted to me and Abraham’s words to his servants, “We will go up to the mountain to worship….”  Abraham was getting ready to walk up to the mountain top to the place where he was going to sacrifice Isaac – his son – as an offering to the Lord.  This was the promised son that he had waited for for 90 years.  But as much as he loved his son, He loved God more, and his obedience was his act of worship. We had just learned the day before that “The Altar” was one of the previous names that had been given to the mountain, and that morning as we drove to the base it occurred to me, “That’s it…..that’s what we’re doing.  WE are the worship.  WE are the sacrifice that is willingly climbing the mountain and laying ourselves on the altar as a sweet fragrance of worship.”  This was not only an act of worship, it was an act of dying to self and saying to God at another level, “I lay down my life, my dreams, my hopes, my plans.  Take my life and spend it however you want.”  Not an easy act in and of itself.  But in the eyes of the One who gave Himself for us….it’s the only worthy response. Almost two weeks later, when I was in Jo’burg doing a silk painting class, I was humbled beyond words when my friend shared with me that the Lord told her to wash my feet that day.  So, the ladies gathered around me, brought out a beautiful bowl of water with white rose petals in it, and began to pray over me and wash my feet.  “The Lord says thank you for coming to our country and for caring about the women [in trafficking],” one of the ladies began.  My heart was so moved and overwhelmed to hear these words from the Lord.  I was the one that was so thankful for getting to be part of such a significant project.  I never imagined that the Lord would thank ME for coming?  Wow….He is so kind, so gracious, and so generous, and He really does value us and our obedience to Him. Be encouraged that no act of obedience, big or small, is ever overlooked by Him.  He is ravished by you and your love for Him! Song of Solomon 6:5 – “Turn your eyes from me.  They overwhelm...

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You’re the God of this City

Posted on Nov 8, 2014 in Blog Posts, Ministry, Prayer, Trips

Prior to flying to South Africa, our prayer team felt that we were supposed to go to the base of three significant mountains (Table Mountain, Lion’s Head, and Devil’s Peak) before the day of the climb to intercede and prepare the way for what God wanted to do.  After our plane touched down in Cape Town, we started on our trek and stood at the base of each landmark.  The picture above was one of the powerful moments of intercession as we stood overlooking Cape Town and declaring the words to Chris Tomlin’s well-known song: “You’re the God of this city.  You’re the King of these people.  You’re the Lord of this nation.  You are.  You’re the Light in this darkness.  You’re the Hope to the hopeless.  You’re the Peace to the restless.  You are.” At the base of Lion’s Head (pictured above), the winds blew and we felt led to release the glory of God, the light of God, and the beauty of God through Jesus’ blood, purity, and living water.  We also blew the shofar and sounded the alarm on God’s holy hill!  Joel 2:1 – Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy hill. Let all who live in the land tremble, for the day of the Lord is coming. As we prayed at the base of Devil’s Peak, we felt impressed to read Psalm 24 over the land and also felt that God was going to give the mountain a new name (Rev. 2:17).  As a prophetic act, we prayed over a white stone and released it into the land.  We were encouraged the next day to meet a man at the conference who was part of the legal board in Cape Town that has already submitted legislation to change the name.  PTL!  He also shared with me how the Lord spoke to him about 12 years ago as he looked out his window at Table Mountain.  He had frequently climbed the mountain, but this particular day he heard a song in his spirit when he looked at it……“We want to see Jesus lifted high, a banner that flies across the land.  That all might see the Truth and know that He is the way to heaven.”  He immediately knew he needed to get a banner and take it up the mountain to wave and worship with, and he proceeded to describe his purple and gold banner with the name of “Jesus” on it. He talked about the significance of banners and flags in worship and how it’s connected to the way the military used flags.  When an army is advancing and taking ground, they raise the flag! It’s a CALL TO JOIN THE ARMY!  It’s only when an army is retreating that they roll up the flag and run away.  It was amazing!  Everything he was saying went along perfectly with what I was getting ready to teach at my silk painting/prayer workshop.   The workshop was a precious and powerful time of seeing eyes opened and hearts connecting to Jesus in a new and fresh way.  It was so beautiful to see hearts coming alive and being free to be what they were created to be!  In the following days, I was blessed to hear testimonies of freedom and breakthrough from their experience of God speaking to them through the worship with the banners and through the colors....

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