Stability in Instability: Activating Core Strength

In the midst of all the unrest, uncertainty, & instability going on in circumstances around us, the Lord has been emphasizing STABILITY.

(From Webster’s)
Stability:
1: the quality, state, or degree of being stable: [-firmly established: FIXED, STEADFAST; not changing or fluctuating: UNVARYING; PERMANENT, ENDURING; steady in purpose: firm in resolution; not subject to insecurity or emotional illness: SANE, RATIONAL]
a: the strength to stand or endure : FIRMNESS
b: the property of a body that causes it when disturbed from a condition of equilibrium or steady motion to develop forces or moments that restore the original condition


(additional insight from yourdictionary.com)
Stability … not prone to wild fluctuations in emotion. An example of stability is a calm, stable life where you don’t have wild ups and downs.
composure; self-possession
-The tendency to recover from perturbations (anxieties or disturbances from what is normal, especially when the deviation is caused by an outside influence.)

I was reminded of one of TD Jakes’ sermons in the past year where he lamented about how much he abhors exercise balls because they make him unstable, yet it’s in this instability that we are trained to become stable by learning to access and develop “CORE STRENGTH.”

While we know core strength alludes to something within, as believers, we realize this strength doesn’t originate with us, but from the One who lives within.

God is our Refuge and Strength [mighty and impenetrable to temptation], a very present and well-proved help in trouble.
Psalm 46:1

That passage goes on to say in verse 5 ~

God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day.

And we know many more verses echo these truths of God as our Strength & of Him living in us, if we have received Jesus as Lord & Savior. So in times of instability, God is our Core Strength we must access to stabilize us.

Since we’ve been trying to be more faithful and diligent about declaring Psalm 91 in faith over ourselves and the whole Body of Christ during this time, I was also immediately reminded that this passage (at least in the AMPC translation) reveals the key to stability:

He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall remain STABLE and fixed under the shadow of the Almighty [Whose power no foe can withstand]. Psalm 91:1

So we access our Core Strength to become Stable in the midst of Instability
~ by remembering that God dwells in us (renewing our minds to the full implications of this phenomenal reality by letting His Word dwell richly in us, and learning to draw on the glorious riches of Christ in us by faith – John 14, Eph 1-3, Col 1:27; 3:16, Rom 8:11; 12:2, etc.)
~ AND by making sure we are also intentionally continuing to dwell and abide in Him/His Word (through intimate relationship and by taking our position by faith of being seated with & in Christ in Heavenly places – John 8:31-32, John 15, Eph 2:6, I John 2-3).

This stability comes from locating any way we’re out of balance and unstable due to placing too much “weight” (our confidence, trust, faith, & hope) on peripheral/external things that cannot support us, and instead shifting our weight (confidence, trust, faith, & hope) back to the core/center of our lives ~ to our unchanging God & His unfailing Word/promises.

From this position, we can best exercise our faith muscles to develop the “rock hard” spiritual abs that will help us have the strength, stability, balance, and (internal) posture we need and desire (II Peter 1:2-11 AMPC).
After all He is “the ROCK” (Gen 49:24, Deut 32:4, I Sam 2:2, II Sam 22, and too many more to list) ~ a description intended to evoke the ideas of stability, security, & reliability.

From the end of the earth will I cry to You, when my heart is overwhelmed and fainting; lead me to the Rock that is higher than I. For You have been a shelter and a refuge for me, a strong tower against the adversary.I will dwell in Your tabernacle forever; let me find refuge and trust in the shelter of Your wings. Selah [pause, and calmly think of that]! For You, O God, have heard my vows; You have given me the heritage of those who fear, revere, and honor Your name. Psalm 61:2-5

So we don’t have to get offended when evolutionists suggest we came from a rock! On this point we can just agree (though our understanding of what this means should certainly be different).
Yes, we came from a Rock; A Rock is our Father! (Deut 32:18, Psalm 89:26)
God is the Rock from which we were cut & our forefathers of faith are the quarry from which we were hewn. (Isaiah 51)
And Jesus & His Kingdom are the Rock cut from a Mountain that will crush all other kingdoms, bringing them to an end, & will fill the whole earth (Daniel 2).

The stability we want & need comes from building our lives on Him & the Rock of His Word.

So everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts upon them [obeying them] will be like a sensible (prudent, practical, wise) man who built his house upon the rock. 25 And the rain fell and the floods came and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. Matthew 7:24-25

The Lord is exalted, for he dwells on high; he will fill Zion with his justice and righteousness. He will be the sure foundation (a constant SOURCE of STABILITY) for your times, a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the Lord is the key to this treasure.
Isaiah 33:5-6

Based on the words the Lord has been giving, He wants us to develop this stability so that we have the ability to keep walking in the fruit of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faith/faithfulness, & self control) no matter what is happening in our circumstances and regardless of how we may feel.
(As discussed in “Training for Reigning” ~ it is not only patience that requires crucifixion of the flesh to consistently walk in as we should, but ALL the fruit of the Spirit. Help us Jesus!)

(As also discussed in past posts) Though we all prefer the times when faith empowers us to escape from trouble, there are unfortunately other times when God wants our faith to empower us to endure through ~ inheriting the promised victory by faith AND patience (James 1:2-4, Heb 6:11-15, Romans 4:16-22- another STABLE reference in AMPC).

Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is the man whom You discipline and instruct, O Lord, and teach out of Your law, 13 That You may give him power to keep himself calm in the days of adversity, until the [inevitable] pit of corruption is dug for the wicked. 14 For the Lord will not cast off nor spurn His people, neither will He abandon His heritage. Psalm 94:12-14

He (the righteous) will not be moved (shaken) forever; the righteous (the upright, in right standing with God) shall be in everlasting remembrance. He shall not be afraid of evil tidings; his heart is firmly fixed {This Hebrew word also means STABLE}, trusting (leaning on and being confident) in the Lord. His heart is established and steady, he will not be afraid while he waits to see his desire established upon his adversaries. Psalm 112:6-8

(see also Destroying the destroyer)
This truth is not intended to absolve us from doing all the other things the Word tells us to do regarding putting on the whole armor of God and fighting spiritual warfare (taking authority over the enemy, resisting him, and driving him out of our promised land). We certainly don’t want to mistake stability for passivity. But it’s intended to give us the sure footing from which to fight the good fight of faith.

To draw from another familiar metaphor in Scripture, He wants hope, which in Bible terms refers to a confident expectation and assurance of good, to be an ANCHOR for our soul (our mind, will, & emotions), keeping us stable & secure, even in tumultuous circumstances.

This stability in the midst of instability is intended to be a sign to the enemy of his impending defeat & our imminent victory.

And do not [for a moment] be frightened or intimidated in anything by your opponents and adversaries, for such [constancy and fearlessness] will be a clear sign (proof and seal) to them of [their impending] destruction, but [a sure token and evidence] of your deliverance and salvation, and that from God. Philippians 1:28

~ As well as a testimony to those who don’t yet know the Lord of where they can find stability when the world is shaking (Psalm 46, Psalm 91, Hebrews 12:18-29).

… but now He has given a promise: Yet once more I will shake and make tremble not only the earth but also the [starry] heavens. 27 Now this expression, Yet once more, indicates the final removal and transformation of all [that can be] shaken—that is, of that which has been created—in order that what cannot be shaken may remain and continue. Let us therefore, receiving a kingdom that is firm and STABLE and cannot be shaken, offer to God pleasing service and acceptable worship, with modesty and pious care and godly fear and awe; 29 For our God [is indeed] a consuming fire. Hebrews 12:28-29

My soul, wait only upon God and silently submit to Him; for my hope and expectation are from Him. He only is my Rock and my Salvation; He is my Defense and my Fortress, I shall not be moved. With God rests my salvation and my glory; He is my Rock of unyielding strength and impenetrable hardness, and my refuge is in God! Trust in, lean on, rely on, and have confidence in Him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts before Him. God is a refuge for us (a fortress and a high tower). Selah [pause, and calmly think of that]! Psalm 62:5-8

I will leave you with a devotional that was in my Bible when I looked up the Philippians 1 passage mentioned above. I was so blessed to see this additional confirmation of the theme God was emphasizing, through this encouragement to develop a “rock-like temperament” in the face of threats and troubles. Praying for us all!

Destroying the destroyer

At the end of January, before the “world stopped”, I was meditating on some Scriptures from a page of verses I had entitled, “The Lord is a Man of War”. I felt the Lord was highlighting the word “DESTROY” from John 10:10 and I John 3:8 – the former revealing that the THIEF (satan) comes to steal, kill, & DESTROY – but the latter revealing that Jesus came to DESTROY the works of the devil.
So I combined the two together in one confession:
“The thief comes only to steal, kill, & destroy, but Jesus came that we might have God’s abundant, full to overflowing life. (John 10:10) He came to DESTROY THE WORKS OF THE DEVIL. (I John 3:8) Jesus Christ is the SAME yesterday, today, & forever. (Hebrews 13:8) So when the devil comes & works to destroy, Jesus comes & DESTROYS his works!”

Immediately after that, I began reading some of the words the Lord had given in answer to our seeking wisdom re anything we need to know & understand about the “Ready or Not, Here I Come” words He’d given last year (https://www.facebook.com/lauratyree/posts/10155860300345047). I opened to a passage He gave Jesse in Daniel 7, and was amazed not only by the text (in answer to that question), but also by the devotional on the side of the page confirming what I felt He was emphasizing just moments before.

I’m thankful He gave this encouragement on the precipice of the current chaos. May we all be encouraged by the truth revealed in this passage – that even though it may appear the enemy is prevailing for a season, even when he seeks to wear us out in our warfare against him, his time is short; his defeat is sealed. May we continue to #HoldfasttoGodspromises & #Outlastthedevil

Praying for us all & believing for God to take all the enemy has intended for harm in this situation & turn it around for our good & His glory in Ephesians 3:20 ways!

Overcoming Overwhelm: Annihilating ALL the “ANDs”

Recently, my family was encouraged to reread the book of Joshua as we participate in some special times of prayer for my dad’s healing. While several read through it in the first week, knowing dad’s treatment was scheduled to be spread out over several months, I chose to just mix in a chapter every 3rd day so I could continue my regular Bible reading as well. I figured I could use the ongoing inspiration from Joshua as the months went on.

This week I read chapters 10 and 11, which list many battles Israel had to fight to possess what was promised, and their unbroken string of victories. In between these readings, our family received a message from my Mom, listing all the things we’re asking and believing for Dad to be healed from as we continue our special times of prayer for him. I was thankful to see that in spite of the number of things on the list, they were continuing to request prayers for complete healing. We let her know we were standing in agreement in faith. Still, I knew from my own battles that when the list is that long, it’s tempting to feel overwhelmed. I was reminded of a time in recent years when I cried out to the Lord, “It’s TOO MUCH!”, and how He ministered to me so personally and specifically, reminding me that we can safely sail through any storm, no matter how severe or how much troubled water surrounds us, as long as we keep the storm on the OUTSIDE. It’s only when we let the storm on the INSIDE that the troubled waters become “too much” and we’re in danger of sinking.

Yesterday, as I read Joshua 11, I felt the Lord was once again giving the precise encouragement we needed in response to Mom’s message.

The chapter starts out listing the myriad of kings and people that all came together to fight Israel – stating that they were like the sand on the seashore.

It was not difficult to identify and commiserate with how Joshua could feel when he no longer had only one enemy at a time to fight, but it was this AND that AND the other AND AND AND…. All the ANDs of Mom’s prayer request the day before immediately came to mind; our own ANDs were not far behind.

But in spite of all of those enemies who had simultaneously gathered together against them, God commanded them not to be afraid and promised again that He had given all their enemies into their hands. True to His promise, as they did their part to fight, ALL of those ANDs were “utterly destroyed;” “NONE were left!” They possessed the WHOLE promised land, “And the land had rest from war!”

Though there has, and perhaps always will be, teaching that encourages us to just make peace with having enemies in our land (those things that deny and defy God’s promises), encouraging us to choose to see them not as enemies, but as necessary blessings in disguise, Israel’s mandate to possess the promised land, utterly driving out and destroying all their enemies till none remained is our type and shadow, revealing God’s true will. So this is what we continue to believe for as we fight with our spiritual weapons that are mighty for the overthrow and destruction of all that exalts itself against the truth of God’s Word/promises. Though we’re not claiming we can reach a point where we’ll never face another war over our promised land (at least not until Heaven), God has revealed through Israel His desire is that we have “rest from war” ~ that our enemies be utterly destroyed till none remain and we truly possess the whole land.

So no matter how many enemies have simultaneously gathered against you today, we pray this encourages you to be strong and courageous and to keep fighting the good fight of faith toward this end.

(this inset below was between Joshua 10 & 11 in my Bible)

❤️
🙏

Not Impressed

(FB post from November 13, 2017)

Impressive” was the word the parade of doctors and medical professionals, who came to see the spectacle, kept using to describe Jesse‘s streaking in the hospital over the weekend.

No, this was not the kind of streaking that might occur if a heavily sedated patient revolted against his hospital gown and tried to escape the premises. This was the kind of red streaking up the hand and arm that signaled a serious infection was attacking his body – the kind of streaking that caused an urgent care visit to become an ER visit, and an ER visit to become an overnight hospital stay. 

It certainly wasn’t the way we planned to spend the weekend. But J’s self “surgery” Friday evening to remove what he believed to be a leftover piece of splinter from an infected knot on his finger, rapidly turned into a race to prevent sepsis by Saturday afternoon. According to the ER, he got help just in time. 

The overnight hospital stay, so they could give J multiple rounds of IV antibiotics and make sure the infection was responding, was less than comfortable. Between the numerous nurse checks in the night, the conversations I could hear through the walls, the recliner I tried for way too long to get comfortable in, and J’s snoring, I think I only managed 3 hours of sleep. But to me, that snoring was one of the most beautiful sounds I’d ever heard. It meant J was alive and that the antibiotics were doing their job, since he was symptom free enough to sleep.

We still aren’t sure what caused a splinter to become a near life-threatening event. J hadn’t been careless. Several of the medical staff who helped us confessed to having done the same kind of self-surgery J had done to remove a splinter a hundred times. As one friend said, “it sounds suspiciously like an attack.”

As I thought about the doctors using the word “Impressive” to describe the situation, I was reminded of a phrase one of our teachers often uses in response to the enemy’s attacks ~ 

“I’m not impressed.” 

She and her husband use this phrase to minimize focus on what the enemy is trying to do in a given situation and to shift their focus to how much GREATER God is in His ability to destroy the works of the enemy and enable us to overcome. 

So we are choosing not to be impressed by how the enemy was able to so quickly turn such a simple thing into something so serious, but instead to be impressed by all God did, and all the people He used, to enable J to get the help he needed to #overcome – #JustInTime.

Thank you to all of you dear ones who prayed and are continuing to pray us through.  
Here are a few pics – gotta LOVE those happy hospital socks!


#Notimpressedbytheenemy

#ImpressedbyJESUS
#StandingOnThePromises
#NoWeaponFormedWillProsper
#WeOvercomeByTheBloodOfTheLambAndTheWordOfOurTestimony
#GratefultoGod
#HappyHospitalSocks

An Invitation To A Treasure Hunt

And I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places,
that you may know that it is I, the Lord, the God of Israel, Who calls you by your name. Isaiah 45:3

“A treasure hunter is a person who, as either a vocation or avocation, searches for sunken, buried, lost, or hidden treasure and other artifacts.” (Wikipedia)

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a treasure hunter? To experience the perilous adventures of Indiana Jones or the table-turning transformation of the Count of Monte Cristo?

What would you do if you were given a treasure map to riches beyond comprehension and a guarantee that if you would do whatever it took to seek it out, you would find it? If you really BELIEVED it was true, what would you be willing to sacrifice and invest to make that happen?

Sunday night, we watched the movie National Treasure for the first time in years. After the movie, Jesse put on some of the extras, including one about modern day treasure hunters. As I watched, at first I was struck with amazement by their passion and pursuit. I wondered how much money they were spending on each expedition. I wondered how much time. It seemed some were “spending” their very lives (even losing their lives, as in this story I found about a modern day treasure hunt here in Colorado). But when they began to show some of the treasures they had found, I was then struck with a sense of sadness. While I’m sure some of it had historic significance, or monetary value, most of it just looked like “stuff.” Someone else’s old “stuff” who was now long gone. No matter how great it’s worth at one time to the original owners, it was now no longer of any value to them. They couldn’t take it with them when they left this life, and it certainly can’t help them where they are today (whether in eternal life or eternal death). Yet, now other people are consuming their lives and resources tracking down and digging that “stuff” out of dirt, sand, and sea. I realize that for some people, it’s an occupation; for others, a hobby. But I couldn’t help but wonder how many were wasting their entire lives on a trivial pursuit for things they may never find and that, even if they did, would no more benefit them in the end than they benefited others who at one time possessed them. But, it was late – and I was tired. Maybe I was thinking too much, getting too deep, or being overly spiritual and just needed to lighten up….

Moments later, as we went to bed, I was amazed by the Lord’s response to these swirling thoughts, through the word He gave us from Letter’s from God:

“I have bought you a Kingdom and purchased for you a glorious life. I paid with My Son. He gave His life and blood to purchase for you a destiny. It cost Us everything.
The value cannot be measured; it is beyond estimation. There is NO GREATER TREASURE THAT YOU COULD EVER SEEK, FIND, or WANT. The world longs for what I have bought for you. They spend their lives looking in all the wrong places. Life after life is wasted, searching in the coffins of false saviors and dead saints. They spend their life’s savings traveling and digging for the elusive fountain of youth, the holy grail, and the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. They die looking, when what they want and need is standing right next to them. I AM the Desire of all nations. I AM the Missing Piece to the human heart. I AM the only One who can fill the black hole of the soul. I AM the Purchaser of your soul, bought and paid for with sacred blood and perfect obedience. …SPEND YOUR LIFE DISCOVERING THE TREASURE and spending your inheritance. Give it away and it automatically multiplies. There is an UNENDING SUPPLY waiting for your FAITH to UNLOCK.

Wow! I love how often the Lord speaks to us through the movies and about the movies we watch, always reminding us that He is WITH US at all times, attentive to and interested in everything we do. And I love that He took this opportunity when our thoughts were turned to treasure hunting to remind us of the limitless treasures available to us in Him, and that Faith is the Key that will unlock the vaults of the glorious riches of our inheritance. (Maybe it’s time to go back to re-read the incalculable wealth series .)

That night this verse was also in our Scripture confessions:

Thus says the Lord to His anointed, … whose right hand I have held to subdue nations before him, and I will unarm and ungird the loins of kings to open doors before him, so that gates will not be shut. I will go before you and level the mountains [to make the crooked places straight]; I will break in pieces the doors of bronze and cut asunder the bars of iron. And I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places, that you may know that it is I, the Lord, the God of Israel, Who calls you by your name. Isaiah 45:1-3

And the next night, this Scripture:

We accept God’s words and store up His commands within us, turning our ears to wisdom and applying our hearts to understanding, we call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, we look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, therefore we understand the fear of the LORD and find the knowledge of God. For the LORD gives wisdom, and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding. (personalized from Proverbs 2:1-6)

After this, I realized that “treasure” Scriptures had been in our confession list in the days leading up to Sunday as well, before I had noticed this developing theme:

In Him (Christ) all the treasures of [divine] wisdom (comprehensive insight into the ways and purposes of God) and [all the riches of spiritual] knowledge and enlightenment are stored up and lie hidden. Colossians 2:3

He (The LORD) will be the sure foundation for your times, a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the Lord is the key to this treasure. Isaiah 33:6

It seems that God is immensely interested in treasure hunting. The fact that He uses this imagery lets us know that He has riches and treasures hidden away for us that will not be found by the casual or careless. Though they are undoubtedly God’s will for us to receive, they will not automatically come to us without effort. Discovering them will be the result of a deliberate and diligent endeavor. He has revealed to us through nature that gold, diamonds, and other precious metals and gems must be mined for. It will involve seeking, pressing in, and digging out. It will require our time, attention, focus, energy, commitment, concentration, patient persistence, and desire. He wants our lives to be consumed by this pursuit, as long as the treasure we’re seeking with such passion is Him, His Kingdom, wisdom, will, and ways. He has given us the map to limitless treasure and has guaranteed that if we seek with all our hearts, we will find it (Jeremiah 29:13, Matthew 7:7-8, Hebrews 11:6). How will we respond to this invitation and opportunity? What will we be willing to sacrifice and invest to make sure it happens? As in the example at the beginning, if we really BELIEVE it’s true, we should be willing to do whatever it takes. Unlike the treasures of this world that people are giving their lives to find, this is not a treasure we will have to leave behind in the end, nor a treasure that will be unable to benefit us in the life to come. The benefit is for this life and the next (Mark 10:28-30 , Matthew 6:33).

In the movie National Treasure, Ben’s father had ceased to seek out the vast treasure he’d heard about his whole life because he had ceased to believe. Yet, despite his father’s bitter cynicism and discouraging disbelief, Ben continued to persist in his belief, to risk all in his pursuit, and was ultimately rewarded with a discovery that transformed his life and the world.

 

The kingdom of heaven is like a [very precious] treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid again; then in his joy he goes and sells all he has and buys that field [securing the treasure for himself]. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, and upon finding a single pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it.” Matthew 13:44-46

 

Update 10-13-17

Yesterday, I shared with a friend that I’d fallen very far behind on reading Lana Vawser’s words (I had probably 6 wks or more of posts I hadn’t yet had a chance to read). This morning, I was awakened very early and though I certainly tried for some time, couldn’t get back to sleep. Since Lana’s posts were on my mind from the conversation yesterday, I eventually decided to get up and use the additional hours to try to catch up on some of those. Though there were posts both before and after her October 1 post that I needed to read, “for some reason,” I scrolled past other posts and stopped first on that one. Once again, I was utterly undone by God’s orchestration of confirmations when I saw that this word I began with said: 

The Lord has been strongly impressing upon my heart in the last few weeks, the importance of writing everything down that He is sharing, speaking and releasing. …
A GREAT UNLOCKING
There was a great unlocking that was taking place in the stewardship of writing down all that He says, and to meditate upon what He was saying, a whole new realm of hearing from Him and discovering His mysteries and secrets of His heart was being opened wide.
I was ministering in Launceston, Tasmania yesterday and in worship I kept seeing God’s people in scuba diving equipment and they were going to the depths of what looked like a HUGE ocean and they were discovering TREASURE they had never seen or experienced before. As they were going down to the depths I heard Proverbs 25:2:
“God conceals the revelation of His Word in the hiding place of His Glory but the honour of kings is revealed by how they thoroughly search out the deeper meaning of all God says.” (The Passion Translation)
Today, the Lord reminded me of that scuba diving vision and He said again “Write down all that I am saying and you will go deeper than you have ever been.”
There are new treasures, mysteries of God, revelation of His Word and secrets of His heart waiting for you. Chase after Him and His heart and steward what He is saying by continually writing it down, and rivers of refreshment will open up over you. …
Keep an account of all He is saying because out of that account I see a whole new depth of knowing Him and encountering Him, His heart and nature like never before and on the top of every page written in gold it says..
LIFE CHANGING!” (You can see the entire word here on FB

I pray this is as encouraging of a confirmation to you as it is to us!! #WeHearYouLord #ThankYouJesus Hold on to these words as you keep pressing in for all God has for you. Don’t give up. Even if you feel you’ve already sought certain answers wholeheartedly for a long, L-O-N-G time – that you’ve “fished all night” without receiving the clarity you expected and that it’s time to just wash your nets and go home – I pray you’ll hear the Lord challenging you, against all natural wisdom and understanding, to launch out into the deep and let down your nets again. Lord, help us all to respond to this invitation in faith. No matter how great the temptation may be to give up in certain areas, may we all still say, “Nevertheless, because You say so, I will.” (from Luke 5:5) 

Pass The Test

(FB post from April 21, 2017)

“In your anger do not sin” Ephesians 4:26

I’m so thankful God doesn’t tell us not to get angry, b/c there are sho’nuff some things in this life to make you mad.

But I’ve seen once again (repeatedly) this week that He also won’t give us any excuse, no matter how valid we think our reasons are, for holding onto unforgiveness.

If you saw the footage of the family of the man in Cleveland offering forgiveness to their precious loved one’s killer, like me, you may have been reminded that we’re called to a level of forgiveness that can seem insane – incomprehensible – something beyond what’s possible for natural man.

Yes, I’m thankful God doesn’t tell us we can never feel hurt or angry. But He also comes to us right in the middle of searing, scorching hot pain and says, “Yeah, I know what they did was wrong. I know they have no excuse. I know it hurts like crazy. But don’t let their wrong actions cause you to become just as wrong in your response. Forgive. Walk in Love. Don’t return insult for insult or injury for injury. Entrust yourself and everything to Me. If there’s any vengeance to be doled out, that’s My job. Yes, at times you must confront the wrong – but in the right spirit.”

Can you feel the flesh being crucified? Sometimes I want to say, seriously God? How can You require this level of forgiveness? Don’t I have every right to at least think badly of them … even if You won’t let me act on those feelings?

But then He reminds us we’re only being called to forgive as we’ve been forgiven (Mt 18:21-35, Mt 6:14-15, Mk 11:25-26, Col 3;13). And while maybe we could have gotten away with harboring hidden internal sin under the OT external code of law, the royal law of Christ penetrates internally all the way to the heart. Jesus gave us a Higher Standard – one that only HE can help us live. So… God, please help us do this right, b/c we sure can’t do it without You.

“Be angry [at sin—at immorality, at injustice, at ungodly behavior], yet do not sin” ~ Ephesians 4:26

“Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.” I Peter 3:9

“When He was reviled and insulted, He did not revile or offer insult in return; [when] He was abused and suffered, He made no threats [of vengeance]; but he trusted [Himself and everything] to Him Who judges fairly.” I Peter 2:23

“Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Colossians 3:13

#LordHelpUsPassTheTest

When We Get This, We’ll Never Need a Greater Revelation of God’s Love

You may have heard it before – that the answer to your troubles is that you need a greater revelation of God’s love.

In some circles there’s been an endless pursuit of this greater revelation in recent years. Sometimes it seems that next elusive level of revelation is the key to receiving the manifestation of all God’s promises, being delivered from bondage to sin, and finally committing to live wholeheartedly for the Lord.

Don’t get me wrong ~ I get the concept. After all, faith works through love (Gal 5:6) ~ which many interpret to mean that our faith can only work to the degree that we believe and receive God’s love for us and others. So I would never want to invalidate the idea that we should pursue an increasing understanding and awareness of God’s love. I’m extraordinarily grateful that I can say from much experience that God reveals His personal love to us in myriads of beautiful, breathtaking, and intricate ways. When we’re walking in intimate relationship with Him as He desires, these will be a normal part of His interaction with us. He longs for us to be sensitive to the things He does, to take notice, celebrate, and be thankful for all the ways He reveals Himself and His love to us as we walk with Him day by day. And I think this is the heart behind what we’re being encouraged to discover in the quest for a “greater revelation” of God’s love.

But is it possible that we may sometimes look for this greater revelation in the wrong ways? Could it be that constantly seeking a greater revelation of God’s love that’s dependent on Him answering our prayers as we desire, meeting our needs according to our timetable and plan, letting us feel another touch of His tangible Presence, and any number of other ways we may look for Him to reveal His love in the present moment, produces a shallow, unstable foundation of faith? What if God wants us to come up higher still, so that our revelation of His love is no longer dependent on all these variables? What if He wants us to go deeper still to the stable, enduring foundation of the Truth of His Word so that we won’t be moved by shifting circumstantial evidence? Will we doubt God’s love and favor if He doesn’t provide us with the best parking space in the lot? If His promises aren’t fulfilled in the way or time we want, will we question His credibility or care? In a season where His love is best demonstrated through discipline instead of doting, will we be offended and turn away? If His Spirit leads us into a wilderness of testing and trial where we can’t feel His tangible touch as before, will we fear that He’s left us? Will painful circumstances that persist in spite of applying all the right spiritual principles cause our faith to be shaken or shattered? Or are we rooted and grounded in a revelation of His love that supersedes circumstances and can hold us stable and secure through the storms of life, knowing nothing can separate us from His love?

It was fifteen years ago when we were first introduced to the trend of everyone talking about how believers need to get a greater revelation of God’s love. Though I’m sure it wasn’t intentional, this message created an aching void that made us feel as if something must be deficient in our relationship with God. Of course, this feeling isn’t inherently bad, since we all need to maintain hunger and humility in our pursuit of knowing God, realizing we always have room to grow. So, over a period of time, I began crying out, telling God how much I needed this greater revelation of His love that everyone was talking about.

Each time I sought Him about this, He answered me the exact same way.

What was His response to this revelation everyone was pursuing?

Time after time He took me to the accounts in Scripture of Jesus’ crucifixion! After receiving this same response several times, I finally began to get it. It was as though He was saying, “Really, beloved? You came into relationship with me many years ago based on believing and receiving the greatest revelation of My love that exists! I suffered in horrific ways and died an agonizing death to make a way for you to be rescued and redeemed from an eternity in hell and brought into everlasting life with Me! Why are you crying out to me for a “greater” revelation of My love when there is NO GREATER REVELATION OF MY LOVE than the one you already believed when you first received Me as Lord and Savior?!”

I can only imagine how any one of us would feel if we had given the life of our only child so someone else could live, yet afterward this person continued to plead with us to reveal, demonstrate, or prove our love. After all He’s already done by sacrificing His Son, think how God must feel when we allow our revelation of His love to be based on whether He’s giving us the specific breakthroughs, blessings, or signs we’re believing for in any given moment.

Again, don’t misunderstand. I’m a huge advocate of people learning to recognize and delight in all the ways God expresses His extravagant individualized love for each one of us on a daily basis as we develop a close personal relationship with Him. But I also want to remind and encourage us, as the Lord reminded me 15 years ago, that we must never lose sight of the truth that God has already given every believer the greatest revelation of His love that can be found through what He did for us on the cross; there’s none greater! 

Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love. John 13:1

 (Amplified version, “He loved them to the last and to the highest degree.”)

 Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13 NASB

So, if we feel our revelation of God’s love is growing dim, we don’t need to seek a new revelation that requires Him to do one more thing to prove His love for us. We just need to go back to the beginning and remember the revelation we received when we first realized the hopelessness of our condition and understood the terrible price Jesus paid to ransom us from the pit of hell and bring us into relationship with Him and the Father. It’s this revelation of His love that we received when we first came to Him that should provide us with the foundation of faith to believe that He loves us enough to fulfill all His other promises.

Isn’t that the point Paul was making in Romans 8:31-32?

What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Romans 8:31-32 NIV

If God was willing to give that which was greatest and most sacrificial for us, how would He not also do all the other things that demonstrate His love for us in “lesser” ways? Clearly this doesn’t mean that once we really grasp this revelation, we’ll finally be able to receive everything we ask for in the way and time we want. As discussed in previous posts, we’ll never reach a level of faith – nor a revelation of God’s love to fuel our faith – that will exempt us from having to inherit certain promises through patient endurance in addition to faith. There is no revelation of God’s love that is the key to receiving instant manifestations every time we pray. But there is a revelation of God’s love that is key to being able to patiently endure in those times that we don’t receive an instant answer, until we see the manifestation of what God promised.  

We can and should grow in the length, depth, height, and breadth of the revelation of God’s love in ways that cause Him to become more real and personal to us. We can and should ask God for the power to grasp the full dimensions of His love (Ephesians 3:16-19). But we don’t have to wait for Him to do one more thing for us to begin that process. We can meditate on what He already did when He demonstrated the full extent of His love by laying down His life to save us. We can reignite our first revelation of His love until it becomes alive in our hearts again.

I pray that as we celebrate this Resurrection Sunday, we’ll receive afresh this greatest revelation of God’s love that should be the foundation for every subsequent revelation of His love we receive.

In this the love of God was made manifest (displayed) where we are concerned: in that God sent His Son, the only begotten or unique [Son], into the world so that we might live through Him. 10In this is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation (the atoning sacrifice) for our sins. I John 4:9-10 AMP

Passing The “Come Down from the Cross” Test

I began this blog just before Easter based on things God had been speaking to us since last Fall, but never posted it due to confusion that followed about whether God was still giving us this directive or changing course due to so many setbacks, failures, roadblocks, and delays. After seeking the Lord about it more intensely again, Saturday and Sunday we believe we received the confirmations we needed. Thank you Jesus! Hope this blesses others going through this same test…
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As we’ve cried out to the Lord for wisdom and guidance for our situation, the spiritual warfare has been brutal. It’s not that we’ve been unable to hear God. True to His Word, He’s faithfully poured out His answers in amazing ways as we’ve sought. And if those were the only words we’d received, we’d be set. But unfortunately, the enemy has consistently fought against clarity by bringing other words that completely contradict God’s. If we could see the Source/source behind the words we receive, this wouldn’t be a problem. We could simply dismiss every word that defies what God has spoken. But since we’re dealing with the invisible realm, we have to discern which of the words are truly from God and which are not. This has often led to continuing to seek until God pours out His true counsel in such an overwhelming deluge that all counterfeit counsel is drowned and destroyed and His true path is clearly revealed.

During such a time of intense seeking last Fall (2015), asking the Lord to expose which voices were the counterfeits, He began to do just that.
One of the voices He exposed was the voice that tells us to “come down from the cross.”

As we walk out our own crucifixion process on the way to fulfilling God’s call, this voice can come blatantly, just as it did to Jesus, through those who consider themselves our enemies, who don’t believe what God has promised us or called us to do.

“Those who passed by hurled insults at him [reviling Him and reproaching Him abusively in harsh and insolent language], shaking their heads and saying, “So! You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days, come down from the cross and save yourself!” In the same way the chief priests and the teachers of the law mocked him among themselves. “He saved others,” they said, “but he can’t save himself! Let this Messiah, this king of Israel, come down now from the cross, that we may see and believe.” Those crucified with him also heaped insults on him.” Mark 15:29-32
 
It can also come through the enemy himself in the battlefield of our mind or through the hellish circumstances he arrays against us to mock everything God’s promised, tempting us to walk away from God’s call in an attempt to save ourselves. 
But God also showed us how this voice can come more subtly as well, not from the taunts of our enemies and circumstances, but through the concern and counsel of friends and loved ones. After all, they’re pained by seeing us led like sheep to the slaughter and can’t understand how the suffering and sacrifice of “the cross” could be God’s plan. Because they want what’s best for us, they may counsel us to go a way they believe will spare us from hardship and challenge, not knowing their advice would lead us away from where God’s calling us to be.
 
The voice of Peter may immediately come to mind in this category, in that infamous moment he thought Jesus surely misunderstood God’s will and needed his correction. It wasn’t that Peter was completely spiritually out of tune with God and could never be trusted to speak in line with truth. Only a moment before, Jesus confirmed that he had received genuine revelation from God. Perhaps after such a success, newfound confidence in his ability to hear God’s voice emboldened him to challenge Jesus’ seemingly ill-advised plan to go to the cross. This demonstrates just how quickly we can go from speaking the counsel of God to the counsel of the enemy if we’re not careful. Jesus revealed Peter’s mind was now on the things of man rather than God. As we’ve all been guilty of at times, he was thinking and reasoning according to his natural human perspective rather than God’s higher one.
 
The Lord also showed us the voice of Naomi in this category, who out of concern for her daughters-in-law, urged them to “turn back” to where they came from for a chance to find happiness again, rather than remaining with her (since she seemingly had nothing to offer). Orpah acted on this advice and we never hear from her again. But Ruth was faithful to Naomi, and though they endured some hardship for a while, we see God’s Ephesians 3:20 plan eventually unfold.
We also see this test played out through Elijah on the day he was taken to Heaven in a chariot of fire. Three times on his journey he urged his protégé, Elisha, to stay behind while he went on. But each time, Elisha refused, insisting that he would not leave him (just as Ruth insisted with Naomi). His reward for persevering to the very end by his master’s side was a double portion of his spirit.
 
From this, God began a “Don’t Turn Back” series of words, along with the “Don’t Come Down from the Cross” words, admonishing us not to turn back from His call or give up because of the obstacles, attacks, and hardships the enemy brings to stop us, but to be “steadfast and immovable.” He surrounded us with words about sacrifice, laying down our lives, and choosing “commitment over comfort” and “purpose over profit,” lest we make the fatal mistake of Judas, who traded God’s will for his life for some silver coins.
 
If Jesus had been more concerned about His comfort and convenience, or about defending His reputation and proving His identity, than He was about paying the price for our redemption, He could have come down from the cross. And like Jesus – in certain areas, it will be within our power to escape our “cross” too. After all, we only got there by surrendering to God’s call (“Not my will, but yours be done”). So failure to continue to surrender may, in some cases, be able to get us out. But in this moment, God doesn’t call us to escape, but to endure. Jesus willingly stayed in that place of humiliation and suffering, not only for the sake of those who loved Him, but even for those who mocked and insulted while He died for them. And, like Him, though we may despise the process of the “cross,” if we keep our eyes and hearts fixed on the greater good that’s being accomplished and the fulfillment of God’s promises on the other side, we too will be able to endure. We must pass the test of this temptation to come down from the cross, if we want the resurrection on the other side.
 
“I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains by itself alone. But if it dies, it produces many others and yields a rich harvest. Anyone who loves his life loses it, but anyone who hates his life in this world will keep it to life eternal. [Whoever has no love for, no concern for, no regard for his life here on earth, but despises it, preserves his life forever and ever.]” John 12:24-25
 
“(our body in death) is sown in dishonor and humiliation; it is raised in honor and glory. It is sown in infirmity and weakness; it is resurrected in strength and endued with power.” I Cor 15:43
 
Though this last passage in context refers to the death of the natural body, it’s a profound prophetic parallel to the death of the flesh we experience as we endure the crucifixion process that comes with following God’s plan. Dishonor, humiliation, affliction, and suffering are the hallmarks of the cross ~ not things we normally willingly sign up for, yet things we’ll endure for a higher purpose ~ for our love for God and others ~ holding onto His promise that the rewards on the other side will make it all worth it.
One thing I love about the Mark 15 passage above is that, in the enemy’s attempt to mock Jesus on the cross, he inadvertently reminded Jesus of the prophecy/promise of resurrection to follow His painful death (You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days – see John 2:18-22). And God will continue to remind us of His promises too as we endure the crucifixion ~ giving us the words we need, even through unexpected  sources, to sustain our hope and faith all the way through to victory.
If you know you’re following what God said, no matter how hard it gets or what the cost ~ Don’t Turn Back and Don’t Come Down From the Cross.

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This brings us up to date, where during our recent seeking about whether God was still giving us this instruction, He began giving a series of words about “what we VALUE.” Right after He began speaking about this, TD Jakes, our pastor, and another pastor I’ve recently listened to some, all spoke about VALUE. This past Saturday, God gave us another “commitment over comfort” confirmation, stating that He “requires SACRIFICES and a willingness to be UNCOMFORTABLE” in order to do His will. Then Sunday, TD Jakes continued his theme about value. As I listened, I was amazed by how God tied the value theme together with these previous themes – showing that what we value determines what we’re willing to sacrifice. When we value doing God’s will above all else, we will choose “commitment over comfort” and “purpose over profit.” We’ll stay on the cross, willing to sacrifice all to follow Him. Here’s a clip of some of the beyond-the-shadow-of-a-doubt confirmations at the end of TDJs msg:

 

As I prayed about whether to share this word, God gave me this word from Rick Renner that blew me away with its confirmations of the insults Jesus endured on the cross, how the enemy comes at us through people, circumstances, and in the battlefield of our minds to stop us, and the mandates DON’T BACK DOWN and DON’T BACK UP (aka Don’t Come Down from the Cross and Don’t Turn Back): A Fight Always Follows Illumination
#WeHearYouLord #HelpUsJesus

Blessings and Prayers,
Laura Tyree

Training for Reigning – The Fruit of the Spirit Require the Death of the Flesh

(FB post from September 27, 2016)

Jehovah Sneaky  is up to something. Every time we’ve asked Him a certain question lately, instead of answering the question, He’s replied with words about not worrying or being anxious, having peace and joy in the storm, assuring us He has a plan and will reveal it as we continue seeking, and reminding us that with joy we draw waters from the wells of salvation.

Perhaps God’s upside-down Kingdom instructions to have peace and joy should be a comforting relief, but there are times when messages like “Be of Good Cheer,” “Be Content,” and the like, can offend the soul (mind, will, and emotions) – as if maybe God doesn’t really understand what we’re going through or is asking the unreasonable. And after all, if we could just skip to the part where He answers the question and reveals His plan, we wouldn’t have to try not to worry, right?

And so, as I prepare to crucify more of my flesh so I can let His peace and joy reign, I feel God reminding me, as He has in the past, that patience has been unfairly singled out. We often hear people jokingly (or perhaps sincerely) warn believers not to pray for patience because what we’ll get are lots of opportunities to be patient when it’s the last thing we feel like being. But the reality is, this isn’t just the training process for patience, but for all the other fruit of the Spirit as well.

Want more joy? Prepare for opportunities to learn to be joyful in the midst of crushing pressure and tribulation, as God teaches us that it’s the Joy of the LORD that’s our strength, not the Joy of our circumstances (Nehemiah 8:10).

Want peace? Batten down the hatches, put on your rain gear, and get ready to learn to be peaceful in the midst of a raging storm, as the Lord reminds us that He HAS given us His peace and we must STOP ALLOWING ourselves to be troubled and afraid (John 14:27).

Want to grow in love? Roll out the red carpet for a parade of people who will expose the deficiencies in your Christ-likeness and challenge your commitment to love and forgive to the core.

And we could go on down the line with kindness, goodness, gentleness (meekness/humility), faithfulness, and self-control, showing that the only way to develop these is to be put in situations where we feel like doing the opposite so we can learn to crucify our flesh, take authority over our soul, and let God’s Spirit deep down in our spirit come shining through.

#TheFruitoftheSpiritRequiretheDeathofTheFlesh
#WithJOYWeDrawWatersFromTheWellsOfSalvation
#ItsTheJoyoftheLordNottheJoyofourCircumstances
#BeAnxiousForNothing
#GodHasAPlan
#DontPanic_Praise
#SeekAndYouWillFind

LORD of the Breakthrough

Be pleased, O Lord, to deliver me; O Lord, make haste to help me!… You are my Help and my Deliverer. O my God, do not tarry! Psalm 40:13, 17Lord of the Breakthrough

After more desperate cries to God over disappointment of breakthrough not coming in the time frame we were requesting, God made Himself clear again that He wants “unconditional trust” in His timing and process for inheriting the promises by faith and patience. I believe He’s asking for us to trust Him as “Lord of the Breakthrough” (II Samuel 5:20), in the sense that we recognize He is LORD over when and how breakthrough comes and we submit to His Lordship in this area ~ even when, or especially when, we don’t understand His plan and time.

He’s given multiple passages during this storm regarding His “appointed time.”

For the vision is yet for an appointed time and it hurries toward the goal [of fulfillment]; it will not fail (deceive or disappoint). Though it tarry, wait [earnestly and patiently] for it, because it will surely come; it will not be behindhand on its appointed day. Habakkuk 2:3

I don’t believe this is the case in every trial and storm, since we have clear Scriptural precedent demonstrating that, on some occasions, faith was the only determining factor of when and how a breakthrough was received. But many of us want to apply that principle in every situation. This can lead to a host of heartaches for ourselves (or others) if we believe faith must be deficient when we (or others) don’t immediately receive, instead of understanding that sometimes God chooses for us to walk through the fire and flood with Him (Isaiah 43:2, as discussed in “Passing the ‘Though He Slay Me’ Test” and “When God Seems Late”). I think it’s sometimes inadvertently communicated that we should be able to reach a level in our faith that will negate our need to ever have patience, but this view just isn’t supported by Scripture. If we seek the Lord, He’ll show us which kind of trial we’re in and reveal whether He’s waiting on us or whether He’s asking us to wait on Him. In this form of storm, where God’s goal is to develop enduring faith, He’ll remind us of all those Scriptures we’d prefer to opt out of.

Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal which is taking place to test you [that is, to test the quality of your faith], as though something strange or unusual were happening to you. But insofar as you are sharing Christ’s sufferings, keep on rejoicing, so that when His glory is revealed, you may rejoice with great joy. I Peter 4:12-13

Moreover [let us also be full of joy now!] let us exult and triumph in our troubles and rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that pressure and affliction and hardship produce patient and unswerving endurance. And endurance (fortitude) develops maturity of character (approved faith and tried integrity). And character [of this sort] produces [the habit of] joyful and confident hope of eternal salvation. Romans 5:3-4

Consider it nothing but joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you fall into various trials. Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]. And let endurance have its perfect result and do a thorough work, so that you may be perfect and completely developed [in your faith], lacking in nothing. James 1:2-4

 Rejoice and exult in hope; be steadfast and patient in suffering and tribulation; be constant in prayer. Romans 12:12

Here is [the call for] the patient endurance and the faithfulness of the saints [which is seen in the response of God’s people to difficult times]. Revelation 13:10 AMP

I believe God’s been showing us that in certain trials (particularly when He’s determined we must inherit the promises through faith and patience), there is an appointed time for our breakthrough. As Daniel 7:21-27 and Revelation 13:7 show, in these trials, the enemy may be given a certain period of time to make war against us ~ and even be permitted to appear as if he’s winning for a season. His goal with his persistent and relentless assaults is to wear us out and cause us to give up. But if we hold on to God’s promises and endure through the process God’s way, as Daniel 7 shows, the courts of Heaven will eventually intervene, the works of the enemy will be destroyed, and we will possess the Kingdom (we’ll receive the manifestation of God’s covenant promises and provision through Jesus).

But resist him (the devil), be firm in your faith [against his attack—rooted, established, immovable], knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being experienced by your brothers and sisters throughout the world. [You do not suffer alone.] After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His own eternal glory in Christ, will Himself complete, confirm, strengthen, and establish you [making you what you ought to be]. I Peter 5:9-10
 

Do not, therefore, fling away your [fearless] confidence, for it has a glorious and great reward. For you have need of patient endurance [to bear up under difficult circumstances without compromising], so that when you have carried out the will of God, you may receive and enjoy to the full what is promised. Hebrews 10:35-36

God wants to give us the endurance of Jesus so we can outlast the enemy (II Thess 3:5) ~ to make us more determined than the devil and more persistent than the principalities and powers of darkness. He wants us to wear out the enemy instead of being worn out by him. He’s assuring us that as we await our breakthrough, He’s working on our behalf, flipping the script to accomplish a double-divine-turn-around, as He did for Esther, Daniel, and others: not only turning every evil thing the enemy planned for us around on him, so that he’s hung with his own noose, pierced with his own sword, and falls into his own traps and snares – but also turning every good thing the enemy planned for himself around to become our double blessing as we trust and follow Him through the process. Because of this, we can remind the enemy that with every attack he’s only making things worse for himself and better for us.

For some who’ve been enduring through long storms/battles, I believe God’s encouraging us that “Breakthrough draws nigh,” He’s continuing to promise divine intervention, and urging us not to faint, but to KEEP ON asking, seeking, and knocking (link to previous post), KEEP ON believing & speaking… (link to previous post), sowing good seeds to help others, and praising & worshiping through the pain. He’s saying we must KEEP ON putting on the whole armor and fighting the good fight of faith with the weapons of His blood, wounds, cross, Name, Word, and Spirit until we see our manifested victory ~ knowing that none of the enemy’s weapons against us will prosper and none of our weapons against him will fail (Isaiah 54:17 , II Corinthians 10:3-5). He’s promising that for those who do so, His reward is on the way.

And let us not lose heart and grow weary and faint in acting nobly and doing right, for in due time and at the appointed season we shall reap, if we do not loosen and relax our courage and faint. Galatians 6:9

So wait patiently, brothers and sisters, until the coming of the Lord. The farmer waits [expectantly] for the precious harvest from the land, being patient about it, until it receives the early and late rains.
You too, be patient; strengthen your hearts [keep them energized and firmly committed to God], because the coming of the Lord is near. … 10 As an example, brothers and sisters, of suffering and patience, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord [as His messengers and representatives]. You know we call those blessed who were steadfast and endured [difficult circumstances]. You have heard of the patient endurance of Job and you have seen the Lord’s outcome [how He richly blessed Job]. The Lord is full of compassion and is merciful. James 5:7-8, 10-11


Also [Jesus] told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not to turn coward (faint, lose heart, and give up). … And will not [our just] God defend and protect and avenge His elect (His chosen ones), who cry to Him day and night? Will He defer them and delay help on their behalf? I tell you, He will defend and protect and avenge them speedily. However, when the Son of Man comes, will He find [persistence in] faith on the earth? Luke 18:1, 7-8

 
#LordoftheBreakthrough #RelentlessFaith #PersistentPrayer #DontGiveUp #KeepOn