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19 entries from January 2017

Combating the Enemy Within

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Photo courtesy of DigitalArt/FreeDigitalPhotos.net


I’ve always been curious as to the stubbornness of my anxiety and sinful habits that nag away at me. I thought it a useful topic to discuss as we walk through this fabulous series on emotional healing.

I’ve mentioned my struggles with anxiety previously. Like many of us it’s been a regular companion for as long as I can remember. I’ve spent enough years of my life in counselors chairs that I figured it was something that would be with me all of my days. There was a self-defeatist sense of ‘oh well, it must just be part of what makes me, me.’ I know many others who struggle with it think similarly.

Some of you may be able to relate to this as you too have had anxiety as a companion or perhaps it’s some habitual ‘thing’ that just hangs around. You’ll have some days where it doesn’t make an appearance, others when it says ‘hi, don’t mind me, I’ll just sit over here,’ and other days when it just gets plain bossy and makes everything so much harder and, scarier, leaving you in despair.

“Help me, Jesus,” is a much-repeated cry on such days.

A Thorn or what?

We’re all familiar with Paul’s ‘thorn’ that he carried with him for most of his days. I know I’ve often resigned myself to thinking my anxiety is my ‘thorn’. But I’ve come to realise that’s a lie.

We talk a lot about the Devil and his role in continually badgering us. Remember John 10:10, he’s come to “steal, kill and destroy.” Yes, we’ve got a target on our backs and his aim is pretty good because he gets a lot of practice.

But it’s not just that enemy we have to contend with. There’s the “enemy within the camp.” Our flesh. I love this definition of the flesh I read recently which provided much insight:

“… the outlook orientated towards the self, that which pursues its own ends in self-sufficient independence from God.” (Anthony Thistleton)

There’s an internal battle going on inside us. Because of the rebellion that took place at the fall, there’s been an “enormous disruption in our human nature.”1 As Hewetson contends: “the body’s desires are entirely legitimate and simply doing what they were created to do. The evil lies in the fact that because of our failure to submit to God, these desires refuse to submit to us and rebel against their lowly position.”2

Hence, the longer we’ve lived with a particular habit or perception or way of thinking, the harder it is to dislodge it. And willpower won’t be sufficient to move it out altogether. We need supernatural help.

Abundant Living

Over the past year I believe I’ve made some significant headway regarding my anxiety. One of the key steps was to acknowledge (and keep reminding myself) that God doesn’t want me to live with anxiety. It’s not in His plan. For me. Or anyone.

“Jesus came that we may have life, and that we may have it abundantly.” This is the flip side of John 10:10.

We can have confidence that in walking with Jesus we are “moving away from lingering imperfections toward more and more holiness.”3 The more we keep our focus on Jesus and the things above (Colossians 3:2) the stronger our protective walls become forcing the enemy to gradually retreat.

Another key consideration was understanding that I am a son of God. As I mentioned in my comment to Lynn’s post last week I knew this in my mind but it’s only really in the past year or so when I believe it’s sunk into my heart.

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.” (Prov 4:23 NLT)

The heart. We can rely too much on our minds and what we are thinking but God looks at the heart. He wants us to love Him with all of our heart … trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your understanding.

Heart health

How do we get heart healthy in 2017? A few thoughts on what I’ve actively been doing these past 18 months or so that I believe have helped me get to where I am now.

1. Get moving

Not just exercise – do that. But actually be positive and take action. God uses us to implement His purposes for our lives. Think of all those great OT stories, eg, Abraham had to leave home, Noah had to build a boat, etc. My anxiety has many times stopped me from starting because “where should I go? what if it isn’t the right way? What if I do it wrong?” You get the gist.

Last year I moved forward by committing to an action that I’d put off for years. Why had I put it off? Pride and fear.

I’m so pleased now that I stepped out as it has definitely helped me. Stepping out does take courage and having someone close who can encourage you, move with you even, is a good way to help take that step.

The greatest counter measure to fear is to start something.

2. Get into the Word

You’re probably tired of me saying this but golly gosh, falling in love with the Word has changed my life. The Word is a lifeline, an instruction manual, a love story, a magnificent mystery, and a supernatural book. And it’s a person.

“… but be transformed by the renewing of your mind …” (Rom 12:2)

Getting the truth into our hearts truly is a strong weapon against those perceptions or deceptions that we’ve carried around with us for too long.

3. Guard your heart

We need to put a gate against all the negatives that can infect our hearts. Many of us struggle with such negatives in our marriages. The enemy uses offense to weaken Christians. Offense can bubble away inside us for years. Our pride will encourage it to convince us we are justified in feeling such and such. And then before we know it relationships are strained. Forgiveness is a powerful weapon against offense.

4. Community

Like many of us being actively involved in church happenings has been a challenge for me. But I also enjoyed being anonymous as it made it easy for me to stay uninvolved. Last year I was asked to increase my engagement in a couple of different groups. I’ve been so blessed by both and have seen my faith and love for Jesus grow as a result.

I was reminded only today of what Acts said about the first church:

“And they devoted themselves to the Apostles teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles.” (Acts 2:42-43)

God loves community. He knows it’s good for us. I’ve been a laggard for too long and used my situation to stay in the shadows.

 

I’ve still got a long way to go. Anxiety pops its head up most days to remind me it’s only a few thoughts away from jumping back in. And yes, they’ve still been some tough days but I’m filled with far more hope and confidence than I was previously.

“Finding fulfillment in God is the most powerful antidote to any sin.” (Gary Thomas). Keep fixing your eyes on Jesus.

Grace and peace, dear friends. I do apologise for the too long a post. Thank you for persisting. May 2017 be a great year where we all experience release from the “stuff” that has vexed us.

Notes: 1. “Good For You. The Extraordinary life of the Ordinary Christian”, Canon David Hewetson, Barton Books, 2015. Pg25. 2. Ibid. pg 26. 3. “Taste and See. Savoring the Supremacy of God in All of Life.” John Piper. Multnomah Books, 2005. Pg100 Referencing Hebrews 10:14 NASB

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THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

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Jesus Our Healer

Healing scriptures picI could likely write an entire book about how Jesus heals. I’ve been collecting scriptures over time and scribbling them down. Here is one page with several (see photo).

But I want to focus on just a few today.

And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick. —Matthew 14:14

Can you imagine this scene with me? Jesus just left a secluded place where He was praying to our Father. He comes from that intimate place and looks out over the vast crowd. The multitudes are broken, in pain, demonized, terrorized, hurting and sick. I love this scripture for so many reasons but I’m moved that He had compassion. He had compassion for the crowds. For the broken and those who were far from perfect. For the sick, not the strong. For the paralyzed and forsaken. For the demonized and those who live in fear and pain.

He had compassion.

He has compassion for us today. His compassion was vast. So much so that He became a man, died for us then rose again to bring us everlasting life. Pow!!!  Just truly take this truth in again and view it with freshness in your heart. His mission was salvation and the healing of our body, mind, and our soul. It was His heart to bring healing to the crowds.

Jesus still heals today. The same compassion moves Him to touch and heal! I will acknowledge that there are Bible believing churches who don’t believe in modern-day healing. I was once in that camp. That was until October 12, 2012 when I had an encounter with the love and power of our living God. Everything changed that day and every day since. I can’t debate theology. But I can bear testimony that is absolute truth, I have been healed in every way through the Trinity. My soul, my mind, my emotions, and my physical body (through a miraculous healing prayer). Dineen and many others can bear testimony to this statement.)

If you have been a reader here for long, you will know that I share openly my life with Jesus. I pray you know that I speak with truth and that you can bear witness to the reality of how my life has transformed in every area because of the healing power of Jesus. If your new and still not certain about all this healing stuff, what have you got to lose? Stay tuned and press into His love and seek healing.

… and He healed their sick!

I want to share the first of the four weapons of healing that I mentioned on Monday. Ready???

The name of Jesus. 

There is power in the spoken name of Jesus.

Have you ever listened to the song, There Is Power In the Name of Jesus? The lyrics continue…. To break every chain, break every chain, break every chain.

When you speak the name of Jesus you don't have to say anything else. Because when he comes, he brings with him everything you need.

In the name of Jesus, the deaf will hear (mark 7:33)

In the name of Jesus, the blind see (Mark 8:23)

In the name of Jesus arthritis must leave (Luke 13:12)

In the name of Jesus, devils are powerless (Luke 10:17)

In the name of Jesus, demons are casted out (Mark 16:17-18)

In the name of Jesus healing is available (Acts 3)

In the name of Jesus, salvation comes (Acts 4)

In the name of Jesus I have peace, joy, and goodness (romans 14:17)

In the name of Jesus, I have hope (Romans 5:27)

In the name of Jesus, we are baptized (Matthew 28:19)

In the name of Jesus, we are forgiven (1 John 1)

In the name of Jesus, we are justified (1 Cor 6:11)*

So here is my assignment this week: Speak the name of Jesus. Often. Bless yourself and others in the name of Jesus. Speak the name of Jesus when you are driving, doing the laundry, while giving the kids a bath. Bless your kids with joy while you are getting them dressed in the morning. Bless yourself with joy and hope. Bless your home with the presence of angels and the glory of God. Bless your husband to thrive at work. Bless him to be a man of integrity, one of honor, a great father. Bless him to learn to love you well. Speak these blessings aloud and in the name of Jesus.

Bless your mind and emotions with the healing of Jesus!

I’ve shared with you before about how I blessed my infected eye. After a week an old contact lens popped out on my finger. I’ve blessed away weird little bumps on my face. I’ve blessed myself into health. I’ve blessed myself with supernatural weight loss. I’ve blessed my car engine and more. Big blessings and small. All things covered by the name of Jesus can change and come under His authority.

Nearly every day, I bless my son, grandkids, and my daughter along with myself, my husband and our home. Why? BECAUSE THERE IS POWER IN THE NAME OF JESUS!!

Use His name in faith and watch things change as you are consistent. It’s one of our most powerful weapons to release the power and glory of God upon our world! Hallelujah!!!

Break Every Chain:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EtyVdC7E6Wo

*Thank you James Franz for sharing.

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THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

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Our Perception and God’s

17322952_sI’m fascinated by Jesus. I’m fascinated by how He interacts with people in the Bible and today. And I’m fascinated by the deeper meanings the Holy Spirit brings to us as we move closer to the truth of who we are and find healing in that process.

My friends, one such story is found in Luke 7, the story of Jesus being anointed by a sinful woman. If you have a moment, read this account in Luke 7:36-50.

As I read this story recently, the Holy Spirit answered a long-held question I had in a very unexpected way. This question came from Jesus’ statement, “But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.”

I asked the Lord once again, “Lord, do I have to be forgiven of a lot of things in order to love you better?”

The question sounded ridiculous to me as I wrote it in my journal, because I knew that sin is sin to Jesus and that He took care of it all on the cross. But I wanted to understand the heart of this story at a deeper level. And if the Holy Spirit was telling me to read this particular piece of Scripture, then I could be assured He had something to reveal to me that would move me closer to the truth.

He brought me back to the beginning of this story and said, “Read it again.”

I did. I read it again, repeatedly over several days. I read of the woman’s weeping and reverent treatment of Jesus. I read of Simon’s thoughts toward the woman. And I read what Jesus says of Simon and how he welcomed Jesus into his home.

Jesus saw Simon and the woman in the very same light. His love for each of them was equal and His gift of forgiveness the same. In fact, the story isn’t at all about how Jesus saw these two people at all.

It’s about how they saw themselves. The woman knew her need and saw Jesus as the answer. Though the perfume was costly, her tears and love were priceless to Jesus. Only He could receive her sacrifice with love and forgiveness.

And restore her…”Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

Simon didn’t see his need. He didn’t see himself at all actually. He lived in the deception that he was good, because as a Pharisee, he’d followed all the rules, therefore keeping himself blind to his need. He saw the woman as the sinner, not himself. 

Simon saw the woman as who she used to be. 

Jesus saw the woman as who He always created her to be.

My friends, that is how Jesus sees us. He always sees us from the place of our complete identity and destiny. And everything He is doing in us right now is to reveal more and more of that, what He’s already declared us to be.

On Friday I plan to talk a little bit more about this subject and share more of what the Holy Spirit is teaching me right now about connecting our identity in Christ to our destiny and how to live it right now. It’s an adventure full of the mystery of God and abiding in Him with peace. I can’t wait to learn more!

I love you, SUMites. I see you through the eyes of God’s love and you are more amazing than you can ever imagine!
Dineen

Copyright: semisatch / 123RF Stock Photo

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THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

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At The Core Of Our Healing - Identity

image from www.spirituallyunequalmarriage.comWe are jumping right into our next segment of teaching on healing but before we do, I want to be very open and straight forth. I am not a professional counselor. I would not advocate to anyone to cease taking medication or to cease or not seek out medical or psychological help and treatment. God gave us doctors. They are awesome and I believe many miracles happen at the hands of physicians.

I am an ordinary believer like you. Yet, I have watched the Trinity move in prayer session to heal minds, spirits, bodies, and emotions. I BELIEVE in the healing power of Jesus Christ. I also have received healing myself. I know with complete certainty, it is God’s will to heal. So, throughout this series, consider the teaching I share. Pray about what I write and follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit as you pray through your healing.

Okay, Public Service Announcement is complete *grin*

Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. —Isaiah 54:4-5 (NKJV)

He carried away our sorrows…. And by His stripes we ARE healed.

This is our truth. This passage is only one of the many that are in the Word that promise healing. Healing of our sorrows (our emotional pain) and healing of our bodies. Healing is a gift of our salvation.

Many of us think salvation is a one-time event which happens the moment we believe in Jesus as our Savior. But how many of you know, that salvation is an active ongoing process that begins at our conversion? How cool is that?

Paul writes: work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; —Philippians 2:12. Did you consider that our salvation is work? To be worked out in fear (respect and honor – my translation). Our life is the ongoing process of perfecting our faith. (Hebrews 12:2)

In all my years of ministry, I’ve discovered a few commonalities in the body of Christ. One, we are WAY too hard on ourselves. We expect perfection and holiness from our faith and feel like a failure when we don’t meet that expectation. I don’t think God expects perfection from our earthly life. He only wants our heart and our willingness to follow hard after Him.

Another area where I find believers struggle is in our identity.

We can read the Word and the promises within that we are a child of God, yet we don’t know what that truly means and the empowerment that comes with faith in that truth.

To receive healing of our body, spirit, mind, will and emotions, we need to grab hold of the truths that the Trinity bestow which leads to receiving and RETAINING our healing.

Beep!  Beep! The Road-Blocks To Healing

Can I ask you a question? Do you believe you are entitled to healing?

For many believers, we struggle with this question. (If you don’t struggle, hang with us because someone today REALLY needs to hear this. It will set them free.) Somewhere, a long time ago, life began to lie to us. Lies such as, I’m not worthy to be loved. I’m never good enough. I’m the one who is always left out. I’m never included. I’m never asked. I’m not loved. I’m never part of something really good. I’m a failure. I’m not entitled to think God would bless me with (healing, hope, provision, etc., etc.)

These are ALL lies from the pit of hell!

Yet, we believe them because of our life experiences and this is where the enemy holds us captive. But today, if you thought to yourself, Yes, I’ve thought this before. Well today I want you to repeat after me and say this aloud to your phone, your computer, or whatever you are reading this from, as if Jesus was before you.

I renounce the lie that I am unworthy. I renounce the lie that I’m not good enough or that I’m not loved or entitled to healing. Today, I choose to believe the truth about myself. I AM A CHILD OF GOD. I was created to be healed and whole, body, mind spirit. I have a fantastic destiny and I was made to fulfill a tremendous assignment given to me by my Father who loves me with His whole heart. Today I will not believe any lie about who I am. I embrace the truth that I am powerful, I will receive healing. I will bring healing to others in Jesus name. I will bring love and life to myself, my family, my church and this world. I will walk in the promises of the Word and stand on them with authority through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Today, I declare I will work out my salvation to obtain every promise that is mine and available to me as a believer in Jesus Christ. Today is my freedom day and I am NOW on the path toward healing. In the powerful name of Jesus. AMEN

I speak this prayer along with you before the Great Cloud of Witnesses….. AMEN!   And Hallelujah. Print this out and say it every day until it is absolute truth to your soul.

God our Father is a lavish God who only wants the best for His kids. Really! His power and angels are given to us to obtain His promises and healing is one of them.

We praise you Papa, God, for your lavish love, the healing that is ours as your kids. We honor you with our faith and are so thankful for the supernatural love and power you give to bring us fully into our calling, destiny, joy and peace, into the abundant life (John 10:10). We adore you. AMEN

On Tuesday, we will look at how Jesus is part of the healing process. Today, it’s time to fully believe that God wants your healing and it is NOW!

Understanding the Trinity in our healing journey sets us upon a solid foundation everything else that is to follow in this series. Stay tuned because this journey is going to stretch you but it will also liberate you. And after you have walked through it you will be trained and empowered to help your friends find their healing. That’s just how the kingdom rolls!!!!!!!

In the comments, I want you to type out your agreement that God is your Father. Making this permanent and written statement makes the demonic shudder with utter horror because you have stepped over the line and they know it.  Wow and Wow!  See you in the comments.

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Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

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Guest Post: The Magnificent Vine by Dee Rusnak

Dear Friends, Dee sent me this piece she wrote and it fits so well with our healing series and who Jesus is, our vine! Thank you, Dee! Love you, SUMites! ~Dineen

 

The Magnificent Vine 

“Therefore encourage one another and build up one another, just as you also are doing.” (1 Thessalonians 5:11)

On our way driving through the mountains of Pennsylvania recently, I gazed at the wooded areas alongside the highway. Everything was buried in a foot of snow that had fallen just a few days before. I was drawn to the effects of the snow on the trees as they stood cold and motionless. Some trees, too weak to stand under the heaviness of the snow, had slumped into what appeared as the "arms" of other trees. It was as though these trees were there for the sole purpose of support…a band of stronger brothers catching, holding, and keeping the weaker ones close. Many had fallen completely, possibly lying there forgotten for years.

Nestled among the tall leafless trees were the pines who tell quite a different story. The wee ones resembled little children straining to keep their branches from buckling beneath the burdensome snow. However, they gave the impression they were quite determined to hold this weight….as if vying for the Guinness record. The larger more mature evergreens emerged strong and confident, as the piles of heavy snow graced their branches.

During the warmer months of summer, my grandsons visited the local state park where the ranger explained how trees communicate with one another through an underground network well hidden from the eyes of humans. Their root systems are linked together, making them stronger as they mature, feeding the needs of others, and more importantly, warning them of impending dangers.

Jesus is our magnificent and powerful Vine from which we grow. The mighty Trunk. The solid Rock. “Abide in Me,” He beckons, “for without Me you can do nothing.” (John 15) Our branch was birthed by the Vine Himself as well as producing the fruit on it. As we remain in the Vine being one with Him, we find strength, courage, wisdom, understanding…all that is necessary to mature and flourish. “He sent from above, He took me, drawing me out of many waters, delivering me from my strong enemy…I will enlighten your darkness; arm you with strength…I am your help and will never leave or forsake you…you are My servant whom I have chosen, fear not, for I am with you, I will strengthen you, yes I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand…I will give power to the weak and to those who have no might I increase strength…He delivered me because He delighted in me.” (Psalms 18, 27, Isaiah 41)

Although in this life the snow storms may initiate, the exasperating bugs may infiltrate, weakness may penetrate, disease may permeate, burdens may arrogate, we find ourselves slumped into the arms of those who are stronger because they, too, were once here and found strength in the Vine. We allow ourselves to be upheld, while on other occasions we are the ones upholding others. It’s who we are. “Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2) Together we take these burdens to the Cross where they’re unloaded and cast off. “Come to Me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)

As we sometimes resemble shaken bystanders seeing our unsaved loved ones lay helplessly fallen, the Holy Spirit from within activates our diligent and earnest prayers which swiftly rise to His inclined ears filling our hearts with the confidence and trust that His promised help will come to pass. “Blessed be the Lord, because He has heard the voice of my supplications! The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in Him and I am helped; therefore, my heart greatly rejoices, and with my song I will praise Him.” (Psalm 28:6-7)

Beneath the Vine is an extraordinary network hidden from the eyes of this world where our roots are permanently linked together by His Word, and everything we could possibly need is supplied by it. It feeds, nourishes, and transforms us into His new creation. It protects, warns of impending danger, giving wisdom, comfort, courage and strength. God uses this remarkable system to bring His message of hope to us and to this fallen world. “Establish Your word to Your servant, who is devoted to fearing You…for Your word has given me life…oh, how I love Your word! It is my meditation all the day…You are my hiding place and my shield, I hope in Your word…my heart stands in awe of Your word…all Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (Psalm 119; 2 Timothy)

Dee and JerryDee Rusnak and her husband, both retired, live in Westerville, Ohio. They have three grown sons and four adorable grandchildren (with another on the way this summer)!

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The Heart of God

GodsLove
Good morning, SUMites! I loved reading your prayers yesterday on Lynn’s post. I prayed in agreement with each one of you and prayed over our community for complete healing. Many of the things you prayed mirrored my own prayers too, my dear friends. I’m so glad we are taking this journey of healing together.

And that’s part of what I feel the Holy Spirit planted in my heart to share today, that some of you out there have been on a very lonely journey in your pain. You have felt alone, as if you’re the only one, in this struggle and even abandoned at times. 

Today the Lord wants you to know that is not true. You are not alone, you have never been alone. And as you walk this path of healing, you will see others walking along side you who have suffered in the same way, you will walk in a new hope and strength like never before, and you will finally reach your breakthrough.

My first breakthrough (yes, I am believing for many more!) happened last week with the help of dear friends who prayed with me, loved me and contended with me. And that is what I feel the Lord is doing in our SUM family as well—uniting us even in this time of healing to uphold one another and rejoice for each other as our breakthroughs come. This is not a journey we are intended to walk alone.

My friends, today I asked the Lord to reveal His heart for our SUM family. He showed me Jesus. He said Jesus is the full representation of His heart for us. Even unto death…

Wow, that just continues to blow my mind and bring home even more the magnitude of God’s love for us. Jesus is not only our Savior, He is our Healer. In the Bible, the Greek words for salvation (sōtēria) and saved (sozo) encompasses more than just our eternal residence but our health and wholeness as well. 

Here’s another nugget God showed me recently in Romans 8.

And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. — Romans 8:38-39 (NLT)

Did you notice that Paul only says present and future? No mention of the past? That’s because Jesus dealt with the past on the cross. He even said, “It is done.”

And we know what happens with today? It becomes the past, so whatever heartache or challenge we face today, tomorrow it will be the past and Jesus declares it done! And as tomorrow becomes today, we can say the same about it as it passes into yesterday. It is done! 

Jesus is the heart of God. So whatever healing we are in need of, my friends, know that the Heart of God, Jesus, says it is done. He has already set our healing in place. It’s one of His promises to us. And He’s inviting us to walk in this truth.

I’m believing this is my year to be healed of emotional eating. Whatever is at the root of this issue will be revealed and healed. This is my need and the mountain I refuse to keep circling. I believe Jesus will move it and say, “It is done!” In the name of Jesus, amen!

Love you, my friends! Contending with you.
Dineen

 

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Emotional Healing - Find Healing and How To Help Others

Emotional Healing For BlogCan I just shout: WE ARE LIVING IN THE BEST TIME OF HISTORY IN THE WORLD!

I’m convinced that God is on the move with accelerated purpose, greater than what the church has witnessed in the past.

I’m convinced that we, the Church, are in a critical and unique place in the plans of God. I believe that God is about to bring a release so profound that millions of people that we would never expect, will turn their lives over to Jesus. They will be coming into the Kingdom in droves out of drug abuse, sexual perversion, antagonistic atheism, and many places and lifestyles. They are going to miraculously find Jesus.

And they are going to need healing.

They will need a church, God’s people, to help them move forward out of their addictions, the pain of torture and every kind of abuse as well as demonic oppression. They will NEED US! They will need a holy and healthy church. A church of ordinary people who can lead them toward complete healing of their heart (soul), mind, body, will and emotions.

My friends, this is our next calling. And as SUMites we have a unique place in this. Because we live in a spiritually mismatched marriage and thus, most of us know what it feels like to not fit in the “church.” We understand how to thrive on the fringe of church life. And after many years living as a married-single at church, our experience has prepared us to help others who come to church to find acceptance.  God has uniquely prepared us with the knowledge and heart to help them to fit in and be healed.

BUT, we can’t help them if we aren’t healed ourselves!

Thus, I’m convinced the Holy Spirit has filled my heart with so much knowledge in the last year about healing that I’m to share with our community. You know, ever since I started writing ten years ago, the Lord said to me, “Lynn, just share what you are learning. Share from your heart what I am teaching you. Because what you are learning is what others need as well.” So truly, most of what I’ve written is an account of my love relationship with our Father, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit.

So, it may appear to be a weird thing to teach about emotional healing on a marriage blog. But, the more I spend time with Jesus the GREATER the urgency rises in my heart to share what I’ve learned.

Let me ask you something.

Do you wonder why you still struggle so much in your faith? Are there moments when you are filled with doubt? And yet you have prayed and prayed to remove all doubt. Do you fight continuing battles with anxiety and overwhelming fear? You experience triumph and then days later, fear overwhelms your mind again. Why does this happen?  

Do you still battle against anger even rage? Why do you fight against addictions, apathy, resentment, your weight, shame, guilt and pain? Real pain?

I ask this because I know so many believers truly press into their relationship with Christ. Like me they read the Word. They have worked through a great amount of forgiveness and have done the hard work of learning obedience to obtain God’s best for our lives.

YET, we still struggle in areas and the enemy gains a grip in our life and brings destruction. Why does this still happen to me?  We can’t quite figure it out.

Well after some great research and real practice I’ve come to discover that some of our struggle is related to unhealed emotional pain. And emotional pain can wreak havoc in our life and the lives of those we love. Emotional pain can be hidden in our soul from years ago or a new wound can open up at any time. A relationship can be riddled with unhealed emotional pain. And that is why we are going to walk through how Jesus heals emotional pain.

Through this series, we will endeavor to understand how emotional pain can cause setbacks and how to become free. And I mean FREE!

We will look at:

  • Healing simple emotional pain.
  • How God the Father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit work to bring healing to emotional pain. (scripture support)
  • Toxic shame.
  • How to heal an emotional event from your past.
  • Emotional healing for marriage.
  • The prayer for emotional healing.
  • Ongoing healing (day-to-day healing).
  • Repentance is healing (You and your family).
  • The Four Weapons you have for healing.
  • Physical healing.
  • Radical obedience leads to increases in the Kingdom.
  • Emotional Healing assignments
  • Sharing our healing and helping others.

Okay, these are just a few of the topics that are weighty upon my mind. There are more and they are awesome.

We will get started on Friday with outlining how the Trinity works within us for our healing. Today, I want you to go into your prayer time and ask the Lord if you have some wounds that need healing.

In the comments, take a brave step. Write a simple prayer to our Father that you will walk willingly and honestly through this season with Him, seeking His hand, his love and His healing. Pray in Jesus name. I will pray with you.

Are you ready to be touched by the supernatural hand of God?

Great days are ahead for you, healed and whole, in Jesus name.

I love you! Lynn

*****

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"Watch What I Do!"

IStock_000005733150MediumWhat has God promised you, my friends? That is the place I want to start today, because I’ve discovered there is a very definitive process that occurs between the promise given and the reality (or manifestation) of that promise. And it’s in the in between time that we can get confused or even lose sight of our promise.

No, I will not break my covenant; I will not take back a single word I said. — Psalm 89:34 (NLT)

I believe as a community we are on this journey right now together. As I shared last week during our prayer and fasting, this is a Year of Promises. As I walk in this place of waiting and the challenges I’ve faced, I’m finding that God’s promises are designed to bring us from one point and place in time to another and it’s very much to do with our growth as believers.

We’ve talked in the past about preparation and that is part of this promise package. God always sees us according to His plan for us—who He created us to be. He sees us from our future and therefore partners with us to direct our path accordingly. Our promises are part of that future becoming our present reality. So, in everything, God is working for our good to according to that picture. 

Yes, we do have an enemy that will do whatever he can to hinder and delay that path, but ultimately, as we continue to seek God and say yes to Him, we are assured of victory, as God’s Word says. He already sees us as victorious, therefore we are. That’s an important place to walk in faith and perseverance (Romans 8). 

As God cheers us on He also works in us so that we can walk in the fullness of our callings (destiny) and many times that means we need healing. We live in the reality of good verses evil and the imperfections of this world, so it is inevitable. 

This past week God worked this in my life in a stunning way. As I mentioned God revealed some things to me, of which one part was a deep need for emotional healing. I find it so very interesting that as Lynn is about to begin this series on emotional healing, God walks me through that very thing.

So, my dear SUMites, I want to encourage you to walk this journey with us, because it is part of the revelation of your promises this year. To fully receive what these promises are we often must grow in some way to be able to walk in them. This is part of God’s upgrade or promotion process. He wants us to benefit fully from His promises. 

Think of it in a way as professional training or learning a skill. In order to function as a lawyer in a court or as a teacher in a classroom, we have to learn things in order to fully function in those places. Our “training” or teaching can be very specialized too.

I believe that God is doing much of this in us for many reasons. For me, this means I am more emotionally healthy for two reasons. One, to walk in the broader places He is taking me in ministry and to be ready for where He is taking my husband to one day be in ministry together. Yes, He has to get me ready (prepared) for what that means. Oh boy…

And sometimes it can seem messy and painful, but as we’ve used the analogy before, a wound must be cleaned for it to heal well and without infection. Think of the lies, hurts, rejections and grudges we carry as infections, that once dealt with, our emotional wounds can be healed.

The wonderful thing about this process is that it ripples out. So often we want to fix what we see on the outside, but God works from the inside out and that is what those around us begin to see as we are healed. Those places we often struggle with externally could very well be the reflection of something inside in need of healing. This applies to our spouses too, my friends. We have the benefit of the Great Physician at work in us to help us heal, yet those who don’t know Jesus yet can only rely on their own resources or that which the world offers.

My friends, whatever God did in me this week broke and released things I have carried for years. I feel lighter, stronger, and more peaceful. And I am excited to walk in this new freedom and am expectant of the ways it will show up more in my life. I’m excited to see what God does next, and I am looking forward to what He does in all of us through Lynn’s series. 

It’s going to be good. How do I know that? God told me. Since last weekend, His still soft voice has whispered over and over to me these words.

“Watch what I do.”

And He has expanded those words for our community. This is what I feel I hear Him saying for us:

Watch what I do.

In your homes and in your marriages,

Watch what I do.

In your lives and in your government,

Watch what I do.

In your nation and in your communities,

Watch what I do.

In your minds and in your hearts,

Watch what I do.

SUMites, the choice is always ours. God loves us no matter what. He is always for us and always, always, always, working for our good. So if you feel this is something you want, then I encourage you to pray something like this in your own words:

Lord, I want everything You have written on the pages of my book in heaven to become a reality in my life. I want to let go of the pain and hurts and be healed of the emotional traumas in my heart and soul. Whatever that takes and whatever that looks like, Lord, I say yes. I am ready. I trust You. I love you and I am so grateful that You love me with such a relentless and perfect love. Lord, I am watching to see what You do! In the name of Jesus, amen!

For all of God’s promises have been fulfilled in Christ with a resounding “Yes!” And through Christ, our “Amen” (which means “Yes”) ascends to God for his glory. — 2 Cor. 1:20 (NLT)

I love you, my SUM family. I’m so blessed to walk this journey with you and stand with you in prayer.
Dineen

*****

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Sumite Prayer Partners - Thoughts on Friendship

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Hi fellow Sumites, Christy Edney here! As I was praying for our prayer partnerships I started to wonder if any of you have begun to feel the Spirt using your relationship to advance your spiritual and emotional maturity. I know, that is quite a question! Please let me explain myself. I can look at one friendship in my life and clearly see how God used it to expose and heal some hidden sin in my heart. That friendship began as most do; we met at church, had many things in common and were both seeking God. Over time, I began to love her like a sister and even placed her on a very high pedestal. Then God swopped in and convicted me of my sin in making our friendship an idol. After more time had passed, her life became extremely busy and suddenly I felt like my needs weren’t being met. Yet again, God rushed in to teach me that our friendship was never meant to fulfill my needs. Only God is capable of meeting my every need. He also taught me that our friendship is a gift from God. Like every God-given gift, it’s to be used for his glory and can be a blessing to many people. Now, I thank God for this gift and ask him to show me how I can be a blessing to her.

Growing and sustaining a godly friendship is not easy, it takes intentional prayer, a selfless attitude and a willingness to be molded by the Spirit of God. So, why would I hope and pray for such a challenging friendship? I do this because humans are relational creatures and God uses relationships in more ways than we can begin to imagine. I do this because God brought this woman into my life and I want to be obedient to his command in John 13:34 “So now I give you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other.”

Heavenly father, I thank you for the gift of friendship. I ask you to bless our community with relationships that would bring spiritual healing and growth. But above all, please gift us with relationships that would bring glory to your name and impact countless generations to come. Lord, I invite your Spirit to move freely through this community, to shine your holy light on the areas that need to be touched by your healing power. I ask you to fill our leaders with the courage to present challenging topics. Such topics that would propel each of us into a deeper and more fruitful relationship with you. I ask these things in the name of the life giving king, Jesus Christ, amen!

More information on our prayer partnerships can be found by clicking this link: Sumite Prayer Partners. If you are ready to receive a prayer partner then please click the following link to send me an email request: Partnership Request

*****

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Defending Our Mind

21139604_sSUMites, we’ve just come out of our week of prayer & fasting. I must say I am blown away at how powerful this year’s fast seemed to be in our community. Abba is really taking us to new levels and places this year, my friends. 

Don’t be surprised if things continue to be revealed, shift and unfold over the next several weeks. We’ve set the stage for 2017 in a powerful way and God does not disappoint.

Over the week, God revealed some truths in Scripture and connected some dots for me. One I’d like to share with you today, because it’s a new prayer strategy for me. And in light of some of the things God showed me this week and Lynn’s upcoming series on emotional healing, I believe it is timely.

We’ve studied this verse before. In fact, Lynn has a video about it over there in the sidebar. 

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. — 2 Cor. 10:5

Standing on the truth of 1 Cor. 7:14 (chapter eight in our prayer book) and combining it with Jer. 24:7, this is how the Holy Spirit led me to pray it for my husband (and children):

Lord Jesus, I stand before you in my authority as the believing wife who sanctifies her husband through her faith and repent for Mike for his unbelief, doubt and choice of atheism. And in my authority I demolish these arguments of unbelief, doubt and atheism that have set themselves up against the knowledge of God and I take captive every thought bombarding or residing in him that perpetuates or agrees with these lies and make them obedient to the truth of Jesus Christ. And I declare he is a holy man of God, has received a heart that knows God, is now therefore a son of God and will return to God wholeheartedly. In the saving name of Jesus, amen!

For me:

In the name of Jesus Christ, I destroy every argument and every pretension raised against the knowledge of God that resides in my heart, my mind and/or in my life in any way and declare them gone and done. Demolished! And I take captive every thought, doubt, or insecurity and make it obedient to the truth of Jesus. I am a child of God, empowered by the Holy Spirit, blessed with every spiritual blessing in Christ, welcomed before the throne of grace and anointed by God to proclaim and speak truth. In the mighty name of Jesus, amen!

Anytime we remove an untruth (lie), it is important to replace it with truth. And based upon what I experienced last week and am sensing the Holy Spirit saying now, God has set something into motion and that which He has placed in us during our time of prayer and fasting will become powerful tools over the weeks and months ahead. Thus we must defend and protect those truths and not allow the enemy to take them away (make us forget) or muddle the truths with his lies (confusion, doubting if you truly heard God, etc.). 

On Friday I will share a bit more of what God revealed to me over the week as He connects more of the dots for me. And boy, do I need a lot more dots connected. LOL!

Love you, SUMites! Share in the comments whatever the Holy Spirit lays on your heart.
Dineen

 

*****

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FAST 2017: Day Five

image from www.spirituallyunequalmarriage.com

We arrived. Hallelujah!

My fast went fairly decent. Wasn’t perfect but fasted mostly for five days, (I still have today to go). I lost four pounds and gained new awe in my heart for our Father.

I feel almost melancholy that our fast is ending. This week has brought tears to my eyes, laughter to my heart to read what happened in your lives through the book and the fast. I’m humbled and in awe that our Lord is so powerful on the move to bring breakthrough to our SUM House of believers.

Today, is a special day because chapter 13 is a gift. I wrote it following a powerful prayer session. And what I received, God says is for everyone who contends for an unsaved spouse. So I pass it along to you.

Pray and release.

Don’t carry the burdens you are not to carry. Jesus died to bring us into a life of peace. And peace is His gift. Release your spouse and your worry to the King of Kings.

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. —John 14:27

Read chapter thirteen and the conclusion on page 139. Also, there are more prayers in this book than I was able to connect to the chapters. READ ALL OF THEM.

Today, I ask that if you are a SUMite that you take five minutes to stop in and leave a prayer of peace in the comments. Pray peace over yourself, your family, your marriage, whatever the Spirit leads.

I will start. Jesus you said that you came to leave us peace. I know peace is only something that comes from You. I receive it. I receive peace into my home, my marriage. I speak peace over my son, Brad, daughter, Caitie, and grandchildren. I speak a new peace over my husband, Michael. I will not be troubled or afraid. You have proven your faithfulness to me year after year. Thank you for peace that surpasses all understanding. I am utterly grateful for everything you lavishly provide year after year. I love you with all of my heart, mind, soul and strength. I am yours forever. I pray now for peace to reign, love to win, hate to fail, and for Your Kingdom to be made known to a lost and desperate world. In Your Powerful Name, Jesus. AMEN

You can add your prayer and include the names of those who you are praying for. I will pray along with you. Or copy my prayer, add name and then type: AMEN

Pray in the comments. Share what has happened this week in the comments. Did you struggle? Was there breakthrough? Let me know if you experienced something new in your time with God and let’s celebrate this fact: God is good!

I love you. Lynn

*THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart to those who contributed to Winning Them With Prayer. Your love of our Savior shines bright in these pages. Well done good and faithful servants!

Ian, Tara, Heather, Martha, Christi, Lynette, Jim, Dorothy, Ramona, Flavia, Joanne, Heather, Dee, Taylor, Patty, Barb, Evie, Maira, Gillian. I heart you! And Dineen, I adore you. Your design and layout efforts made this book a reality. One a saw a long time ago in my mind. You made it come alive!!

Stay tuned as we start our next series on January 23rd: Emotional Healing: How Jesus heals shame, guilt, wounding and pain.

*****

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What Is Your Assignment From God For Your life?

2017 Chapter One
I’m completely overcome by what is happening in our community this week. Gang, reading the comments and the emails that I’m receiving… It’s just wild and awesome!

Winning Them With Prayer Front CoverI’m undone by how God is moving in the pages of the book, Winning Them With Prayer. Some of you are experiencing breakthroughs at home, with husbands and even feeling the spiritual bondage break off….. THIS IS THE REASON I WROTE THIS BOOK. God has purposed THIS book with power from on High to break the chains of Satan.

This is what Anja from Switzerland wrote at the end of her astonishing comments on the Day Three post: Needless to say…I’m without words. I’m humbled, amazed and feel as if years of burdens have been lifted off my shoulders. It is the answer to so many of my heart’s cries. I got a long way to go but now I am certain I am not alone!

Anja, heard the Voice of God and what she shared was miraculous.

I told you…. I was certain that God was ready to bring breakthroughs. And there are more ahead… For all of us whether you are fasting or not. I’m certain of it.

 

Today on Day Four, I am compelled to help our community to step into a new season. So many people don’t have any idea how to discover their purpose or ministry on this earth. Well, today let’s take a few questions with us into our prayer time and allow the Holy Spirit to reveal His calling and purpose for your life.

And can I state clearly here, everyone has a purpose and everyone who is a believer has a ministry.

So what is your assignment from God?

I want you to ask yourself these questions:

What makes you cry?

What makes you angry?

And, why doesn’t someone do something about it?

SpirituallyUnequalMarriage.com was born one day when I realized that there were very little resources to grow my faith and to walk in victory in my marriage. In 2006 there were three books on the market and I personally only liked one of them and there was nothing online to help support me.

Thus, our blog was born.

You may not be called to write or serve in full time ministry even. But you may have an assignment to start something at your workplace, after work, or participate in a missions trip. You may be gifted to paint, to dance, or to have empathy and compassion for people, or children, animals. You may be gifted in business (God loves to promote a business with a leader that is a believer). God has a calling on all of us. And you specifically have a unique was of doing what He has made you to do.

When you serve in your calling it makes you come alive. When you are working in your assignment your creativity is release to fulfill your heart, your soul, mind and your assignment.

And it is possible to serve God’s purposes even when you are married to a pre-believer. Dineen and I are living proof.

Go into your quiet time and ask God if you are serving in the right place. If you are serving at church but it isn’t fulfilling, I would think hard about what you are doing and pray about making a change.

It’s been 10 years that I have served the SUM community and I STILL LOVE TO GET UP EVERY DAY AND BE PART OF IT ALL. And that’s saying something because I usually lose interest in things after about three years.

I’m speaking now in faith that a breakthrough in your creativity and purpose would be released today. That you are filled with dreams on how to use your creativity to serve the Kingdom. That God will open doors for you that were previously shut that you may walk into your holy and divine calling this year. In Jesus name. AMEN

Today read chapters nine through twelve. Work through the assignment. Also, take time to discover the amazing life God has for you in 2017.

In the comments share what you are hearing. Share how the Lord is speaking to you as you work through the chapters. Share anything that you feel would encourage another.

Stay strong as you fast. Forgive yourself if you couldn’t make it. And just pick right up and keep going. The breakthroughs are happening. I will share some of mine later in the month when we tackle the next series, Emotional Healing.

I love you….. I love Jesus. It’s a great time to be alive and I have so much HOPE for all of us that I’m giving it away to you now. In Jesus name. Hugs, Lynn

*****

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SUMite Fast 2017: Day Three, Anointing Oil

Isa10-27
This verse has been pinned to my prayer board for weeks.

My friends, we are already on day three of our prayer and fasting. Please share what God is showing and/or telling you. Your testimony may be the very piece another SUMite needs to help her or him connect the dots of what God is revealing. I’m finding myself in that place again where God is connecting dots again and revealing answers to prayers. I’m so very encouraged especially for my children and hope to share more soon on what’s happening. 

Plus, our first night of fasting from television turned out to be such a precious time for my hubby and I. We played games and didn’t miss watching it at all. I am amazed by that, my friends. I know the Holy Spirit gave me grace for that. Plus I had time to spend in His presence later in the evening too. So so good…

And I will say I’m finally seeing breakthrough in a place I’ve been praying over for more than two years now. This and answers to prayers I received on Sunday are like cool, fresh water to my thirsty spirit. Boy howdie, my spirit was thirstier than I realized. How about you?

My friends, let’s continue to press in and contend for what God is giving us this week. Even if you aren’t seeing anything shift yet, don’t despair and don’t compare. Every breakthrough and promise from God is unique and comes in His packaging, not our expectations. Remember chapters two and three…pray, believe…

Read chapters seven through nine in Winning Them With Prayer. Lynn’s prayer using 1 Cor. 7:14 is so powerful! Our power-passage! This is our place of authority and brings power to our prayers. Remember that your prayers for your spouse sanctify them, which according to the Greek translation of that word means that God has laid a claim upon them to be set apart for Him. That is what your prayers do for spouse and loved ones, SUMites!

And now I want to leave you with a verse that has become HUGE in my life. Several weeks ago one of our directors at the healing rooms I work at gave me this verse with the instructions, “God wants you to meditate on it.”

It’s a powerful verse, my friends. That same day God told me what He wanted me to know regarding it and just yesterday, He confirmed it in a very unexpected way. Now I would like you to meditate upon it, SUMites.

It shall come to pass in that day
That his burden will be taken away from your shoulder,
And his yoke from your neck,
And the yoke will be destroyed because of the anointing oil. — Isaiah 10:27

I love you, SUMites! I pray your week is filled with new revelations and promises from the Lord. I pray your fasting becomes joyful and a delight as you press closer to God. I pray that this week sets the stage for an entire year of breakthroughs for you, your family and this entire community. 

And Lord, I pray that very SUMite would be freshly anointed in Your holy oil. In the mighty and powerful name of Jesus, amen!

Love and hugs!
Dineen

 

*****

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SUMite Fast 2017: Day Two, Promises

IStock_000012723220XSmallMy friends, we are on day two of our fast. I’ve chosen to fast from sun-up to sun-down each day. I also sought the Holy Spirit’s guidance on anything else I should fast from, to honor the Lord. He’s impressed upon my heart to fast from television. Not that I watch that much, but it is a routine thing for hubby and I in the evenings to relax and watch old reruns. I find this time very cathartic.

But God told me He wants to do something different so maybe this is part of it. The unexpected part of it is when I told my husband I was “considering” doing this, I asked him what he thought and if he’d like to join me.

He said yes! So, Mike is joining me in a fast from television this week. I’m fascinated to see what God does with that, my friends. Really and truly, the Lord is so surprising! 

Our assignment yesterday was to read the first three chapters in Winning Them With Prayer and write down our prayers. Also to read and personalize the SUMite prayer listed at the end of each chapter. I hope you are greatly encouraged, my friends, to see and know we are all pressing in together for God’s heart and Words for our lives. I find that so comforting too.

Chapters two and three speak of belief and praying God’s Word. These are vital keys to our faith walk! I know at times we battle doubt and fear—I know I do—but I continually find the answer in God’s Word and the power His spoken Word holds. I will never tire of Jeremiah 1:12:

The Lord said to me, “You have seen correctly, for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled.” — Jer. 1:12

To know our Lord watches over His Word to perform it is so powerfully reassuring in my life, SUMites. I pray that’s true for you too. Believe it! Believe Him!

I shared some words the Lord spoke to me last Friday and mentioned there was more. What God shared with me just after the New Year is that 2017 will be A Year of Promises. And it’s two fold:

  1. The revelation of promises already given.
  2. New promises to be given and released

My friends, I am especially excited about this because I received some prophetic words from my church family on Sunday that confirmed and answered three cries of my heart and this word God gave me about A Year of Promises. Amazingly, they were given to me by four different people at different moments who had no knowledge of any my prayers or what God had been showing me.

That is how wonderful our Lord is, and how much He loves us. So I encourage you to keep pressing deeper into His presence and love. Be like the widow who goes before the judge and continually asks (Luke 18). I have been doing this for weeks to counter some heavy spiritual warfare and finally the answers came. I am a bit weary from it, but very relieved to know God’s heart, my friends. It was the confirmation and affirmation I desperately needed. Our Father God cares so much for us and though we don’t understand His ways, He is very present and active in answering our prayers.

Let’s continue our prayer and fasting today with chapters four through six in Winning Them With Prayer. As I said, God wants to do something different in 2017. With an open heart ask Him what that means for you and your family. I do so hope you’ll share too. I’ve no doubt God will speak to and through each of us astonishing ways!

I love you, SUMites! Your heart for God and love for each other are two of the most beautiful things I have witnessed in this lifetime. And if that’s how I feel, can you imagine how our Lord Jesus feels to behold this amazing family?

Yes, I am in awe. Of Him…and you.
Dineen

 

*****

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BREAKTHROUGH

SUMITE Fast 2017: Monday, January 9: Day one.
New Life Chapter One
SUMites…. Who wants a new beginning? A fresh start? A year of new possibilities, promises fulfilled and a deeper walk with our Lord?

We are a people who are endowed with new starts. Believers have been given a gift of new starts and new beginnings. It’s in our nature. We experienced our first new beginning when we came to faith in Jesus. I’m convinced that the Lord gives us new beginnings, new starts over and over again throughout our life. And this fast is going to be the start of significant changes and fulfilments in our lives in 2017.

I am CONVINCED that this year is a breakthrough year. I have enough faith in this statement for all of us, even for those of you who aren’t feeling it yet. I’m convinced that God is leading us toward significant person healing. I’m convinced that there are even more prayer strategies that He is anxious to teach us in the months ahead.

So, buckle in. Set your mind on the prize (Philippians 3:14) and BELIEVE for your new beginning to become reality because Jesus loves you that much.

I’m in for the long haul. The Lord has commissioned me to fast from food the entire five days. I write that sentence in faith that God will see me through. But I’m convinced that on day three spectacular answers, breakthrough, provision will result. It’s usually on day three that a shift will happen because of our faithfulness.

Join me and fast in accord with how the Lord has called you!

Sometimes we can start a fast and say to ourselves that yes, I will pray. Then what happens is we go into our room and sit down and then think, It’s hard to pray. I don’t know what to say. What to ask. I’m bored, distracted, etc.

Anyone?

That is why we are using the prayer strategies book. You can read the prayers aloud. Ask the Holy Spirit to come and rest upon you before you start. Ask God to rest His glory upon you.

Record notes in this book. Like Sarah, she wrote notes and prayers in the margins. There is a place to write prayers in the book and I urge you to get a prayer journal.

This small book scares the devil. This small book is filled with prayers that change hearts, lives, marriages and our faith.

Today, read chapters one, two and three. Read the prayers suggested at the end of each chapter. Write your prayers in the book. Put the date next to the prayer. This is a permanent record of our petitions to the King. And one day we will look at this book again and SEE THE FAITHFULNESS OF OUR GOOD FATHER.

If you don't have a book, write in your prayer journal. NO ONE in our House of SUM is left out. Pray and write your prayers, hopes, and the words God gives you in a journal.

The Holy Spirit is with us. Jesus adores us and our Father IS GOOD, EVERY DAY, IN EVERY WAY GOOD!!! On Thursday, we will ask the Lord to reveal our divine purpose/calling. It will be a powerful day of shifting in the Spiritual realm of your life. That’s why I decided to wait until after day three.

Today in the comments, let’s encourage one another to grow in our belief (chapter three). Let’s post our thoughts. Share your struggles if you are needing prayer support. When you’re hungry, stop in and share and let someone cover you in prayer. Then pray for another SUMite. 

The devil trembles when the SUMite Nation prays!!!!

And God rejoices when we pray and He sends answers (Chapter seven.)

Woo Hoo. My excitement is electric. I will be praying for you this week. I love you so very much. Hugs, Lynn

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THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

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Winning Them With PRAYER

Good morning, Lynn & Dineen!

I'm sorry to bug you by email, but the Lord has lead me to send you praise....  I received my book yesterday and decided this morning to open it up and flip through a few pages before I started my day.  But....OH WOW....an hour later and pages and pages of prayers written along the margins...I'm having trouble putting it down.  

I'm overcome by the palpable manifestation of his presence in my home.  You are true intercessors and the power of your prayers comes pouring off the pages from the instant the book is opened. Blessings to you both.  You are such valuable gifts to this community.  I often feel that we are such a misunderstood community of believers!  The lies I hear that speak out against us, saying "God said don't be unequally yoked, so your situation/marriage/struggle is your fault." can be so discouraging. But, obviously it's a lot more complicated and you both have brought power to all of us.  

You have brought hope through your faith and through your perseverance to stand firm on the TRUTH that every promise is YES and AMEN and the TRUTH that HE watches over his word to perform it and HIS WORD WILL NEVER BE RETURN VOID.  I'm blown away, ladies!  This is truly an anointed book and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.  Blessing and prosperity to both of you in this coming year!  

Love,

Sarah 

***

I opened this email up on Sunday morning just before the service began. 

I wept!

SUMites, let these prayers change your life!

I will have books again on Monday and can get them into the mail on Tuesday. We are using this book as a record of God's hand in our lives in 2017. It will become a heirloom for your children. 

I will also be sending you to it during our series on Emotional Healing. If at all possible, order a copy. Not for me or Dineen but because the prayers are truly anointed with power and will help you pray with more effectiveness and grow your confidence in prayer. You can order for two day delivery as well and still have time to work in them during our 2017 FAST.

I'm convinced this book is one of my primary assignments in this life, especially chapter eight. Wow, it's not often you glimpse something that was completed which God prepared before time began. 

(lump in throat)

I LOVE you. I have so much to share with you in the weeks ahead. Truly, with full faith I say this: 2017 is going to be a significant year of breakthrough, provision, and HEALING! 

Get ready. Commit to the process FULLY! And tell your friends! Hallelujah and glory to our Father, the Son and the Spirit that makes us ONE! Hugs, Lynn

WinningThemWithPrayers-CoverLR2

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Getting Ready for Our 2017 Prayer & Fasting

Prayer&fasting
Hello, SUMites! My dear friends, I've missed you. I hope your Christmas was filled with joy and wonder, and that your new year is off to a great start, full of hope and expectation.

My time with my family over Christmas and New Years was very sweet and precious. I am so grateful for it as we only get to spend Christmas together every other year now. So thank you, my SUM family, for your prayers and blessings over my time with my daughters and son-in-love. As you can imagine, I miss them greatly. Our Papa God has comforted my melancholy heart every time I’ve run to Him. He’s so good. 

But I am ready to walk into 2017 with new expectations and new clarity for direction. And I'm "expecting" next week's prayer and fasting will be key to that. I believe many of you are too. I've loved reading your comments and praying with you about your hopes and expectations. You guys write some awesome stuff! 

Many of you shared a word God has given you for the new year. I too have been seeking God for what He has for me and my family, and what He wants to be for us in 2017. He's not only given me a word for 2017, He's challenged me. 

This word pushes me way out of my comfort zone, my friends. Why? Because it challenges me to step out further in faith and trust Him more. It's risky. I will be honest and share that I've grappled with some disappointments this last year that I'm coming to realize are more to do with my impatience than anything else. God's timing is, well, God's timing.

But this pushes me to think and dream even further out than I ever have before. This year my word is "Envision." And with it have come some pretty big possibilities—ones I can't even begin to figure out how God will accomplish them. But He is the God of possibilities, and I've learned that His ways are absolutely astonishing and so very unexpected. 

So, yes, I am challenged this year to leave the comfortable places of my thinking and allow Him to take me places I can't even imagine. I am excited and a bit anxious all at once!

SUMites, God has given me some words for us here too that I look forward to sharing during our prayer and fasting next week. They are full of hope and promise, my friends. God has so much in store for us. Yes, we will be challenged in new ways, but let's remember that God has prepared us for this time and season. We are fully equipped and complete in Him. Amen!

Here are some links to help you with types of fasts and how to fast. If fasting from food isn't an option, please don't discount yourself from participating. There are other avenues you can take and other ways to fast. Such as fasting from sweets, or one particular food item you tend to gravitate toward. Or fasting from television or social media.

Why Should You Fast

How to Fast Safely

How Long and What Type of Fast is Right for You

Eph1-18The best course here is to ask the Holy Spirit to impress upon your heart what kind of fast is best for this time and will honor and please God. Just as faith as small as a mustard seed delights our Papa God, He views even our smallest efforts with pleasure when the intent in our heart is great. He is always more interested in our hearts than results.

And now, SUM family, I want to share the words He gave me in November. They are so encouraging and uplifting. I for one am longing to go deeper with the Lord this year than ever before. I'm still learning to hear and listen to Him in this new way He's teaching me. I'm still learning to focus on Him and the journey instead of the end result. I have so much to learn!

I am establishing My kingdom as never before in the believer's heart. And it is a kingdom about My love. A Kingdom of Love.

The enemy's scare tactics are desperate—like a toddler pitching a fit over not getting his way—a last ditch attempt to wreak havoc. But he won't succeed as long as you don't acknowledge him. He is harmless.

My intentions are clear. My heart is known and true. Listen for My pulse. Listen to My heart. I am true and I am truth. With Me you will not fail. In Me you are a true victor. A true champion, for My cause.

And My cause is you, every one of My children! I am raising you up higher than ever before, My dread champions, and I am calling you forth. You carry the weapons of love, joy and peace. Wield them freely. Walk in love, walk in peace, be strengthened in My abundant joy. I am with You all the way!

Thank You, Father God! Thank You, Lord Jesus! Thank You, Holy Spirit! We are so grateful for Your great love and good intentions for us. Lord, I pray for every one of us in this SUM family, that the eyes of our hearts will be enlightened next week in order that we may know more fully the hope to which You have called us, the riches of Your glorious inheritance in the saints, and Your incomparably great power for us who believe (Eph. 1:18-19). 

In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, I bless this church without walls with the oil of joy. I bless every SUMite with greater peace than she or he has ever known. And I bless every one of us with a greater capacity to love than we have ever imagined. Lord, let us walk in the love You pour out upon us and share it with everyone we encounter. Make each of us a reflection and representation of Your Kingdom of Love. Amen!

I love you, SUMites! See you next week!

Dineen

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Stay in the tent

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Photo courtesy of khunaspix/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Last year my Word for the year was “DELIGHT”. I so enjoyed delighting and figured there was so much more for me to experience that I was expecting I would stick with the same word for 2017.

As I prayed and meditated on it last week I stumbled across a line in a prayer I read:

“If I’m going to be in a hurry about one thing this year, may it be to linger longer in Your Presence. Everything else will fall into place.”1

I stopped. Re-read this line a few more times as I prayed and then I had a new Word for 2017. Can you guess what it is?

Linger!

It’s a great word. How much do we enjoy lingering on a great cup of coffee or fabulous dessert or a piece of music? But how much time do we spend simply lingering in the Lord’s Presence to savor Him? Not what He can give us but Him, His face, His person.

Those who lingered

As I reflected more on that line above, people in the Bible who spent time lingering in His Presence came to mind.

Joshua

“And it came to pass, when Moses entered the tabernacle, that the pillar of cloud descended and stood at the door of the tabernacle, and the Lord talked with Moses. All the people saw the pillar of cloud standing at the tabernacle door, and all the people rose and worshiped, each man in his tent door. So the Lord spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend. And he would return to the camp, but his servant Joshua the son of Nun, a young man, did not depart from the tabernacle.” (Exodus 33:9-11 NKJV)

Joshua lingered in the tabernacle (nee: tent). Even when Moses, his mentor, left it. It changed him. So much so it was Joshua, and not Moses, who received the honour of leading the Israelites into the Promised Land.

Anna

“Now there was one, Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was of a great age, and had lived with a husband seven years from her virginity; and this woman was a widow of about eighty-four years,[a] who did not depart from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day. And coming in that instant she gave thanks to the Lord, and spoke of Him to all those who looked for redemption in Jerusalem.” (Luke 2:36-38 NKJV)

These are the only three verses in the Bible about Anna. She was a woman who lingered in the temple. And served God with fasting and praying. The Lord honoured her by allowing her to see Jesus, the infant.

Mary of Bethany

“Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word.” (Luke 10: 38-39 NKJV)

Mary lingered at Jesus’ feet and heard His word.

How can we linger in His Presence?

As we come to next week’s annual New Year prayer and fast what can we do to linger a little longer in His Presence next week and beyond? No doubt you have some ideas but here are a couple:

  • When the hunger pangs strike, pray. Even if it’s as simple as saying “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus.” Allow His name to change the atmosphere around you so you “forget” your hunger.
  • Turn up every morning (or lunchtime or evening) – come often as your mind enjoys the habit of consistency.
  • Be silent – I know this can be extremely hard for those of you with kiddies and busy households. But I hope you’re able to find a spot where you can escape for a few moments and simply be quiet. Might be in the car after the school drop-off. Take one or two deep breaths and then quietly say “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus” or similar and allow yourself to linger with your Creator. The one who loves you more than anyone.
  • Start small. If this is new to you a few minutes of lingering is good. Don’t feel you need to speak. Simply ask Jesus what’s on His heart. And listen.

Stay in the tent. And enjoy Him.

Let me pray for us all.

Dear Jesus, we love you, we adore you. We consecrate this new year of 2017 to you. We consecrate ourselves, our partners, our marriages and families to you. We consecrate this week of fasting and prayer to You. Let Your kingdom come in our marriages and in our homes – let Your will be done, Lord Jesus. Help us to linger longer in Your Presence and to enjoy the fruits of Your tenderness. We pray this year will be the year our partners come to know you. We love you and love being your sons and daughters. In Your Mighty Name we pray. Amen.

Grace and peace, dear friends. I so look forward to sharing next week with you all and savouring our Lord together. I love reading of other people's Word's of the year and/or verses if you adopt such a practice. Share them in the comments so we can encourage you in your endeavours for 2017.

Notes: 1. “Everyday Prayers”, Scotty Smith, Baker Books, 2011. Pg377.

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THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

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Guest Post: Perceptions by Dee Rusnak

Happy New Year, SUMites! So good to be back with you! Hope you had a wonderful Christmas filled with special moments of delight and love. I'm so glad my daughters and son-in-love were with us this year. Our Christmas was busy and fun!

As we walk into 2017 together, my friends, I want to encourage you to press into your relationship with God even deeper, to sit with Him quietly and begin asking Him what He wants to do and be for you in 2017. This is a great way to get ready for our praying and fasting next week.

I keep hearing God say, "I want to do something different." I don't fully understand what that is yet, as I've been very distracted with the holidays and family, but I'm trusting He will show me. I'm so ready for "different"! How about you?

Here's a wonderful post by our very own Dee Rusnak (thank you, Dee!) to help us reflect upon the lens we're looking through and ask God for wisdom and alignment with His lens. I love you, SUMites! And I'm walking expectantly into 2017 with you. ~Dineen

Perception
by Dee Rusnak

Dee and Jerry“Making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.” Proverbs 2:2-5

There’s a commercial on television for a product that can reduce the effects of a migraine headache. The mother in this piece wants desperately to understand what her daughter suffers during her migraine. Hence, the makers of this product developed a virtual reality simulation of a migraine and placed the device over the mother’s eyes so she, too, can experience what her daughter endures. Understanding immediately consumed this mother’s heart as she finally saw what her daughter sees, and her daughter was filled with great relief. Mom gets it. “How much better it is to acquire wisdom than gold; to acquire understanding is more desirable than silver.” Proverbs 16:16

I, too, have suffered with ocular (or visual) migraines since I was 13, which went undiagnosed until I was in my late 40’s. That is when I returned to the workforce and they became more frequent. I mentioned it to my family doctor who said, “Oh, I get those. They’re visual migraines.” What??? I did some investigating online and what I found was astounding. Much like the mother in the commercial, I saw on my screen the actual pictures of what I see during my migraine episodes. I learned what triggers them and what to avoid to deter them. Sharing this with my family finally brought understanding to all of us. We get it. “Wisdom is of utmost importance, therefore get wisdom, and with all your effort work to acquire understanding.” Proverbs 4:7

Being misunderstood is quite frustrating and causes division. No matter how much we try to explain, people still don’t get it and can be coldly dismissive. We’re not much better. We expect certain responses and judge others for failing to live up to them. But, God doesn’t ask us to pray to be understood. He asks us to pray to understand…understand Him and others. In his book Love and Respect, (you gotta read this book!) Dr. Emerson Eggerichs explains when God created men and women, He wired us differently and gave us distinctive roles. We both can experience, see, and hear the same situation, yet are at odds as to what we perceive. We each have our own lenses and grow angry because the other person is coming from the opposite pole. We fail to want to see the whole picture, to go see it from their side. Once we begin to understand this fundamental principle, then a light begins to shine. Oh, now I think I get it. “Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly.” Proverbs 14:29

Because we and our pre-believing spouses are unequal spiritually, the condition becomes more complex. As we try to talk to them about Jesus or His Word or anything about God, to them we are talking gibberish. We want so desperately for them to see what we see, but their lenses are still very much distorted and they cannot comprehend without God’s intervention. When my grandkids were toddlers, they often spoke unintelligibly and demanded that I repeat what they said, confirming they were understood. More often than not they cried out in frustration because I wasn’t getting it. I had to quickly set aside all logic and enter their world to see things as they see them. Perhaps we need to do the same for our spouses. What's more, we were once where they are. I get where they are. “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” 1 Corinthians 1:18

Removing my glasses and making the effort to see through someone else’s lenses is what the Lord has been teaching me this season. Not only wanting to see their side of things, but God’s perception of it as well. The Lord isn’t asking me to ditch my glasses, but merely trying on someone else’s, helping me to meet them where they are. After all, how often has God met me with His grace, patience and love to bring me into His understanding? Often this effort can result in correcting my own vision, causing me to see things more clearly. In addition, attempting to understand another’s perspective commonly initiates that same effort from the other person. Let’s help each other get it. “Think over what I say, for the Lord will give you understanding in everything.” 2 Timothy 2:7

Understanding is a tremendously blessed relief. That is why God refers to it as “better than gold.” Our world today certainly needs it, as do our households. We seek God first, for there is no better wisdom than from Him. He will give us the discernment to understand what appears confusing, and give us direction on how to proceed. Imagine how many chasms can be narrowed, walls dismantled, and divisions eliminated if we only make the attempt to try to see things from someone else’s perception.

“I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know Him better.” Ephesians 1:17

Dee Rusnak and her husband, both retired, live in Westerville, Ohio. They have three grown sons and four adorable grandchildren (with another on the way this summer)!

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Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

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