14 posts categorized "Keys To The Kingdom"

Like a Child ...

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Photo courtesy of photo stock and FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Hello, dear SUMites. Ian from Down Under here. Spring has begun and the Lord is spoiling us with some delightfully beautiful days.

It was Father’s Day here on Sunday and Fiona had organized an afternoon tea with our two sons, their partners and grandchildren at our eldest son’s home. It was a gorgeous sunny day and we had a splendid relaxing time, six adults and two littlies. As you’d expect the latter received most of our attention and I rejoiced at strolling around the garden with our dear little Willow (8 months now) while two-year-old Moses entertained us with his ‘new words’ and racing around on his various tricycles.

There was an interesting moment when Daniel swung his son around on a makeshift swing (Dan being the swing). It was delightful seeing the joy on Moses’ face – he kinda went into a zone of contentment as he flew through the air for a few moments. There was no sign of fear as he trusted in his dad to swing him high and low then bring him down for a safe landing.

The Law of Three Strikes

We’ve talked about this ‘law’ a few times in the past. I woke yesterday to find two of my readings featured Matthew 18:1-3 – “’At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, ‘Who, then, is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven?’ He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: ’Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven.’”

Okay Lord, you’re trying to tell me something here. And so I reflected on that moment Dan swung his son around. Moses simply trusted. He couldn’t experience the fun moment without his dad and let himself go so he could simply experience the magic of it.

It’s a wonderful picture of that verse above, isn’t it? The Kingdom of Heaven is here (Mark 1:15) and God wants us to experience it all and all we have to do is believe and let go with child-like trust so we can enjoy the magic of it.

Ooo … it’s exciting, isn’t it.

Being a Parent

You might be asking: “where’s the third strike, Ian?”

Almost immediately after reading the Matthew verse (twice) I read Psalm 71:6 – “Upon you I have leaned from before my birth; you are who took me from my mother’s womb. My praise is continually of you.”

God is our true parent (to quote Sara Hagerty). But it was the “leaned” that lingered as I read the verse a number of times. God wants us to lean on Him. We were never meant to live lives of independence, rather dependent ones. It’s a characteristic of being childlike – dependence. Trusting in your parent. Little Moses trusted Dan, his father, completely. And loved every moment of it.

Yes, there will be times we trust God and frankly don’t have much fun at all but I sense in that Psalm verse, we’re being told that God is trustworthy, even in birth. Hey, birth is pretty rugged for both mom and baby. But we can lean on God then and always.

 

What childlike quality to find most compelling when Jesus invites us to become like little children to experience His Kingdom? I’d love it if we could share in the comments below.


Could This Be The Answer You've Been Waiting For?

Hey SUM family, Tiffany here!

I have worked for my employer for a little over three years now. I do the same thing all day everyday. Monday through Friday, eight hours a day. I see the same computer screen as I fingerprint the numerous people who come into my office. The other day Holy Spirit alerted me to listen and pay attention to people's reactions to seeing their fingerprints on the computer screen, many of them for the first time:

Wow, that is so cool!

I have never seen this before!

Sorry, I am just amazed by this!

Look at that!

Can you believe that we all have different finger prints? No two prints are the same!?

Was I looking at the same machine? It is cool to see the detail, I guess.....

There are some of us who have forgotten how to be in love with and romanced by our King. Groom help bride up sillouetteWe have been on this journey for a long time.  Our eyes have adjusted to the normalcy of life. We've braced for life's storms for too long that we've gone into self-preservation mode. We have forgotten what is like to have childlike faith. This isn't a rebuke but a call to see things from God's perspective. Be refreshed! Be renewed! Be invigorated again!

I felt a strong impression from our Daddy God to lavish you with love today. If anything today resonates with you, my challenge is for you to take it and meditate on it. Don't allow the familiar to blur your vision of God's great love relationship with you. Don't doubt that you aren't good enough to receive it. Don't think, "He must be talking to someone else..."  This word is for you...yes YOU!

I have loved you, [insert your name here], with an everlasting love.
With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself. (Jeremiah 31:3)

I will make you, [insert your name here], my wife forever,
showing you righteousness and justice,
unfailing love and compassion.
I will be faithful to you and make you mine,
and you will finally know me as the Lord. (Hosea 2:19-20)

My thoughts of you are countless for you are very precious to Me. (Psalm 139:17)

You can give me all of your worries and cares. They are not meant to be carried by you. I love you so much! (1 Peter 5:7, Psalm 55:22)

I am for you. You are my beloved and I am yours. (Song of Solomon 6:3)

I will give you everything that you need. You mean that much to me. (Romans 8:31)

There is nothing that can separate you from My love. (Romans 8:38-39)

I will rescue you. I will protect you. You can trust me. When you call on Me I am there. (Psalm 91)

One of my favorite things to do is watch over you as you sleep. (Psalm 3:5)

I will show you my goodness in the land of the living. (Psalm 27:13)

I will never forsake you. I will never cast you off. (Psalm 94:14)

You are my masterpiece. My workmanship. I am so proud of you! (Ephesians 2:10)

You are my special treasure. You are so valuable to me! (Exodus 19:5, 1 Peter 2:9)

There is so much more that I could share. Every word in the Bible is dripping with His sweet love for you.

Beloved, stop striving. Stop trying to meet unattainable expectations of yourself...they're not from Him. Daddy God is so pleased with you. He delights in you so much that He breaks out in song over you. (Zephaniah 3:17)

I want to wrap up with this song. This is one to sit and soak in the love of your Daddy.

Let's share in the comments - sometimes life gives us a hard beating! What are some things that you do in order to remember the love God has for you? What are some things we can share with one another to fan the flames of our heart and fill us with hope? What keeps you standing firm and grounded in your relationship with Daddy God, Jesus and Holy Spirit?


The Power of Prayer

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Image courtesy of thepathtraveler at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

We’re a praying SUMite army, aren’t we, dear friends? Ian from freezing cold Sydney here. I trust those of you in the northern hemisphere are enjoying the warmer temperatures and having fun on summer vacations.

Prayer. It’s one of those little words that we’re all familiar with, it’s a practice we all do, some of us I expect more than others and for most, if not all of us, it can be hard work.

And it’s powerful. Really powerful. It changes hearts, saves people, heals people, restores people and most significantly it connects our hearts with God. The triune God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. 

“Through relationship, we carry and release the Kingdom onto the earth. This is what joy-filled prayer looks like.” – Beni Johnson

Prayer is Relational

It’s completely relational and usually reflects the state of our connection with God. If you’re finding your prayer life has become transactional (‘Help me, God!’ Thanks, God! etc) it probably reflects one’s relationship isn’t very tight, that there’s some distance between you. But if you find you’re always dialoguing with God throughout your day it more than likely reflects a strong relationship that is growing deeper.

Prayer is simply that … communicating with God. Most often it’s just us and God, other times, it’s with two or three of us and God, and other times it’s in bigger groups, like a Church Prayer meeting. 

It’s often hard because of its relational nature with someone invisible. But it becomes easier when our heart desires to be connected to God's heart. He wants to share His heart with us. 

Three Keys

There are lots of great stories in the Bible that provide us with examples of how to posture ourselves in our communications with God. Here are three thoughts that I’ve gleaned through my readings.

  1. Seek to know God’s Will

“Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” – Matthew 6:10.

We all know this verse from The Lord’s Prayer. God invites us into His Kingdom, there’s stuff going on that He wants us to participate in, so the more we seek after knowing His will the greater the intimacy we’ll develop with Him. Often we’re guilty of asking for our plans and our desires to be approved by God rather than coming to God and dialoguing with Him about what’s on His heart about a certain matter. Jesus provides the great example of this: at the Garden of Gethsemane the night He is betrayed He pleads with His Father to be freed of His responsibility (“if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me?”). But moments later Jesus determined that His Father’s way was best for him (“Yet not as I will, but as you will.”)

Praying God's Word is a great way of praying His Will. I start many mornings praying Psalm 23 over myself and over others the Lord puts upon my heart.

  1. Praise God Always

“pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of Godin Christ Jesus for you.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18 (NKJV)

Did you catch those words I underlined: “for this is the will of God”. What is? To pray without ceasing and give thanks in everything. Start thanking God immediately, praising Him for the outcome of the prayer you’ve just prayed even though it hasn’t happened yet. Praise God before you receive the answer.

Remember when Paul and Silas were chained up in prison (Acts 16)? What did they do? They sang praises to God. What happened? An earthquake that shook the foundations, doors and chains keeping everyone captive, happened. Paul and Silas were freed.

  1. Continue to Stay Close to God and Follow His Ways

Like any relationship, our connection with God can experience peaks and valleys. Hey, we get distracted. Sometimes very easily. I know I do.

Daniel trusted God even when he had to spend a night in a den full of lions. God rescued Daniel and he continued to follow God’s ways rather than the King’s and we’re told he “prospered during the reign of Darius and the reign of Cyrus the Persian.” (Daniel 6: 28)

The more time we spend with God, in reading His Word, and fellowshipping with other believers, we gain greater understanding of His heart, His mission and His ways. His desire is for us to join Him. But the world has it’s own ways and it’s natural for us to follow those ways. But we’re told in Isaiah 35 that there is a highway called the “Way of Holiness” (v8) and is available for all of us who follow God’s ways. There is neither lion nor ravenous beast to be found on this Way. And those who follow it will “enter Zion with singing and everlasting joy will crown our heads, gladness and joy will overtake us and sorrow and sighing will flee away.” (v 10)

Follow His Way and we will pray prayers that reflect both God’s desires and ours.

 

May we encourage each other in our prayer walks by sharing a little in the comments about what works for us in staying connected with God throughout our busy day.

Blessings my friends.


Hold on Because Your LIFE Depends On It

Hello SUM Family, Tiffany here!

I shared with you at the conference that God has been speaking to me about cedars. Legacy pendantI saw a vision of a tree that was my family

legacy. The deep roots were the word of God so deeply hidden beneath the soil. I wanted to share with you something that I have been working on. These are words that He has been saying about me. (To keep it from getting too long I will only expound on a few)  Let's call today, "Motivation Monday." May these words be a motivation for you to believe what God says about you.

Cedars of Lebanon, Tiffany Carter, 5/31/19

Champion - (1 Corinthians 15:57; 1 Corinthians 9:24; Romans 8:37; Deuteronomy 20:4; Isaiah 6:8)

Elevator - one that lifts or raises someone/something up; exhorter - one who incites by argument, or advice; strongly urges; exultor - one who is extremely joyful; leaps for joy; rejoices); exalter - to elevate by praise; raise high; to enhance the activity of; intensify. (Deuteronomy 18:18; Proverbs 14:34; Psalm 68:3; Proverbs 27:17; Hebrews 3:13)

Deeply rooted - existing for a long time and very difficult to change; firmly established; deeply implanted. (Psalm 1:3; Colossians 2:6-7; John 15:5; Jeremiah 17:7-8; Daniel 2:22; Isaiah 45:3)

Ancient - (Jeremiah 6:16; Jeremiah 1:5; Ephesians 2:10; Ephesians 1:4-5)

Righteousness - (Psalm 92:12-13; Proverbs 21:21; Psalm 112:6-8; Matthew 6:33; Hosea 10:12)

Stalwart Matriarch - woman that rules or dominates her family, group or state who is marked by outstanding strength and vigor of body, mind or spirit. (Psalm 68:11; Proverbs 22:6; James 5:16; Psalm 102:18; Psalm 103:17; Proverbs 14:1)

Overarching Protector - (Matthew 6:10; Ezekiel 22:30; Proverbs 11:11; Jeremiah 29:7)

Freedom - (Psalm 18:48; Ezekiel 3:12; Psalm 119:45; Romans 6:14)

Legacy - something transmitted by or received from an ancestor or predecessor or from the past; carried over from an earlier time. (Psalm 145:4; Deuteronomy 30:19-20; Joshua 24:14-15; Proverbs 13:22; Psalm 78:2-4; Exodus 20:5-6; Deuteronomy 6:5-7; 2 Timothy 2:2)

Emanate Love - (1 Peter 4:8; 1 Corinthians 16:14; Colossians 3:14; Ephesians 5:2; Matthew 22:37-39; Hebrews 10:24-25; Proverbs 17:17; Proverbs 20:6-7; 1 John 4:11; 1 John 3:16-18)

Bethel - house of God. (1 Corinthians 9:26-27; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20; 1 Corinthians 10:31; 1 Peter 4:1-2; Psalm 119:37; Romans 8:5-7)

Anointed - to smear or rub with oil or an oily substance; to apply oil to as part of a religious ceremony; to choose by or as if by divine election. (Isaiah 22:22; 2 Corinthians 1:21-22; 1 John 2:20-21; 1 John 2:27; John 15:16; Psalm 45:7; Isaiah 44:3)

Non-conforming - (2 Corinthians 3:12; Romans 12:1-2; John 17:14-16; Revelation 12:11; Luke 6:27-36)

Ornamental - one who lends grace or beauty; adorned - to enliven. (1 Peter 3:3-4; 2 Corinthians 4:16; Proverbs 31:30; Ecclesiastes 3:11; Genesis 1:27; 1 Timothy 2:9-10; 1 Samuel 16:7)

New - (Hebrews 12:24; Galatians 3:26-27; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Isaiah 43:18-19; 2 Corinthians 4:16-17; 1 Peter 1:3; Mark 2:22).

Storms, temptations and trials will come and try to divert your eyes. The deceiver will come and try to cause you to doubt if not forget these life fulfilling promises.

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lordyour God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.

--Deuteronomy 6:4-9

Do whatever is necessary to remember and cling to these promises. I love making jewelry (see photo above) so this is a good tangible way for me to see His word on a regular basis.

How great of a Daddy we have that He would speak something so special and unique to you individually. Let's talk in the comments: What are some ways that you remember His promises in your own life? What helps you to keep your eyes on the prize set before you?

 


Milestone Made Possible Because Of You

Hey SUM Family, Tiffany Here!

I have some wonderful news to share!

Today I graduated year one of ministry school. This was the first half of a two year program that will lead to ordination.

I was very surprised to receive "The Heart of David Award" along with my certificate of completion. What an honor and joy!

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The words "thank you" are not enough to express the gratitude I have for you,  my beloved family without walls. Your love, encouragement, and support  has tremendously helped carry me to this beautiful moment. Thank you to everyone who has given time, prayer, finances, Scripture and hugs. My accomplishment is your accomplishment.

So we keep on praying for you, asking our God to enable you to live a life worthy of his call. May he give you the power to accomplish all the good things your faith prompts you to do. -- 2 Thessalonians 1:11

Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken. -- Ecclesiastes 4:12

You all have helped me accomplish my dreams. In the comments, share something that God has laid upon your heart to accomplish. I want to pray over you and bless you today.


MORE From The Summit...

Hey SUM family, Tiffany Here! 

During the leader's meeting on the Friday morning before the conference I said I would share a spoken word piece during the offering time. I didn't have anything prepared at the time of volunteering. In fact I just heard the words come out of my mouth. You know those moments when you realize after the fact that you were pushed into things by the Holy Spirit? Maybe it's just me. It happens quite often. *grin*

The rest of the day seemed to fast forward pretty quickly. Filled with fellowship, food and fun. I was exhausted after the meet and greet at Lynn's house - in a good way - and went to bed shortly after everyone left. Saturday morning I wake up and realize that I didn't take time to prepare a spoken word! Out of desperation I laid flat on my back with my arms outstretched (my body in the shape of a cross) and said, "Holy Spirit, I need You to give me a spoken word for today. I want those who hear it to feel your deep love. I want them to know that they can have a close relationship with You. Give me something."

In that moment of asking Him, I could feel the atmosphere change in the room. It was like He was waiting for the invitation to share what was in the deep recesses of His heart. The following is the spoken word. I have posted it on Facebook so it may be a repeat for some. In my humble opinion, Holy Spirit really delivered!

More, Tiffany Carter, 4/6/19

 

Remember when I first revealed myself to you?

The relief you felt?

Just wait there’s more.

 

Remember when you heard me speak life into your bones?

The comfort you felt?

Just wait there’s more.

 

Remember when you received my loving embrace?

The warmth you felt?

Just wait there’s more.

 

Remember when you needed Me and cried out for help?

The deliverance you felt?

Just wait there’s more.

 

Remember when you sought me for clarity?

The answers you felt?

Just wait there’s more.

 

More. Love that is unendable. River w SUM logo

More. Passion that is unshakable.

More. Desire that is unquenchable.

More. Joy that is uncontainable.

More. Intimacy that is unthinkable.

More. Wisdom that is unmatchable.

More. Peace that is uncontrollable.

More. Power that is undeniable.

More. Faith that is unbeatable.

MORE.

 

Remember when you stepped into your destiny and calling?

The freedom you felt?

My beloved child…

Just wait.

There’s MORE.

Ephesians 3:20-21 (TPT) - Never doubt God’s mighty power to work in you and accomplish all this. He will achieve infinitely more than your greatest request, your most unbelievable dream, and exceed your wildest imagination! He will outdo them all, for his miraculous power constantly energizes you.  Now we offer up to God all the glorious praise that rises from every church in every generation through Jesus Christ—and all that will yet be manifest through time and eternity. Amen!

Do you want more? I know that I sure do!

Let's talk in the comments. In these weeks since the conference, what are some things that God has been showing you? How has He shown up in your life personally? In reference to Libby's visions, how have you been feeling the residual affects of the river flowing from the conference? I love you all.


A Table Set For Victory

Hey SUM family, Tiffany Here.

I pray that you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! This is absolutely my favorite time of year. I love gathering with family, eating fantastic food and reflecting  on all of the favor, mercy, and goodness of Daddy that has happened for the year.

As I was thinking last week about what Holy Spirit wanted me to share, I fingerprinted a man with a business logo on his sweatshirt that said "Stillwater." This prompted me to look up "still water" in the Bible. The main passage that came to mind was in Psalm 23:

 The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord
Forever.

TABLE BEFORE ENEMIES*Photo credit: Loving Grace Ministries

Reading this familiar passage again I was shocked to see verse 5, "You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies..." I had completely forgotten that this verse was in this Psalm.

That is when Holy Spirit brought to my mind the song Surrounded (Fight My Battles) by Elyssa Smith from UPPERROOM. Forgive me if I've shared this song before. I love it so much. My favorite verses in this song say, "my weapons are praise and thanksgiving, this is how I fight my battles"

I have been seeing Psalm 23 all over the place since I first saw this man's sweatshirt. I know that of the Psalms, this one is so common and well known even in the secular world; however, this particular passage has not been on my radar for quite some time. Each and every time I am seeing a reference to Psalm 23 there is a different verse that is being highlighted. I think I need to dwell here for a while! I was inspired so much so that I committed this passage to memory. This is a first for me to memorize an entire passage. Woot!

I think with all of the apparent darkness and chaos going on in our community (illness, death, financial struggle, marriage breakdown, depression, chronic pain, etc) and in the world today I want us to meditate on this phrase, "I am beginning to see the darkness around me is just the shadow of Your wings." *Note: this is not my phrase, this gets me every time I listen to this song...SO SO GOOD.*

God has gone up with a shout,
The Lord with the sound of a trumpet.
Sing praises to God, sing praises!
Sing praises to our King, sing praises!
For God is the King of all the earth;
Sing praises with understanding. (Psalm 47)

Please know that our Daddy is surrounding you with His love, presence, favor, mercy, and grace. I know we all know this but may we truly rejoice and sing praises with understanding! Understand your are highly favored. Understand you are loved. Understand you are cherished. Understand in your weakness He is strong. Understand that even in the toughest time of your life He is in control. Understand you are seated with Christ Jesus. Understand you have authority. Understand you are the victor. Understand it. Is. Finished!

Let us lift our voices in one accord today:

I don't know about you the Lord uses songs to get me through the darkest days. Share in the comments some songs that see you through tough times. Your suggestions could be healing salve and oil of joy to another. I love you SUM family.


#fingerprintrevelations

Hey SUMnation! Tiffany here.

Some of you have heard me talk about this unique journey that the Lord has me on right now with my job. I shared this on the SUM sisters in Christ group on Facebook but wanted to reach out and share here as some of you (especially the men) may have questions about what I do as a job and how God is gifting me for ministry. I wanted to give you a quick snap shot into where I spend 40 hours a week and when my heart is prepped right and my mind focusing on the Lord I am given insight that can only come from the Holy Spirit.

 

FPWelcome to my fingerprinting station (picture left). There are two other girls that I work with in my office and we each have our own computer/desk and our own fingerprint station. For the most part my day is split between this view and the view of my desk and computer. This machine has become my "buddy" over the last year. We spend a lot of time together. Maybe I should name it. ::grin:: I have to say I have done a lot of contemplating and talking with the Lord here. In thinking of Moses and the burning bush...if I had the ability to take my shoes off here...I would. This is holy ground. Before I begin to sound sacrilegious I will continue the tour and you will see why I feel this way.

FP2Step on up to the machine! I tried to capture this as best as possible but just imagine this view from your own eyes (picture right).When I fingerprint people we are up close and personal so to speak. The customer stands in front of the fingerprinting machine called Livescan and I stand to the left of the machine. I use gloves during the time of fingerprinting someone but I essentially am holding hands with each person I print. I wish I could tell you how or when this started but my first conscious recollection was feeling a tingling sensation in my hands when fingerprinting someone when I first started doing this job over 2 years ago. I didn't understand at the time. There wasn't any actual guiding from the Holy Spirit at that point just a realization that this feeling in my hands was different than I'd ever experienced before. Eventually I had caught on that it wasn't with everyone I printed and so in the secret of my mind I would pray for those people.

FP1
Placing hand on the Livescan brings a digital print onto the screen

I began to be amazed at how much a stranger would open up to someone like me - a fingerprinter who spends maybe 10 or 15 minutes with you. The crazy thing is they had no idea that I was willing to pray for them and yet the Holy Spirit would open up this close space and meet us there. Where 2 or more are gathered together in Jesus' name - He is there. In doing this job (please let me know if this is not biblically sound) I am beginning to feel as though the where 2 or more are gathered together in His name doesn't have to mean consciously. I mean look at our community. Some of our spouses are willing to allow us to gather together in Jesus name - when our spouses let us pray over them and with them. But, for those of you who have to be more secretive about your prayer life because of hostile spouses - when you intercede on their behalf and they are in the room...my friends...Jesus still shows up whether they know it or not! As I have grown and matured (though only a small amount) in my job I have begun to view this as a ministry. When people open up it could be as simple as they need fingerprinted because they just got a new job that requires a background check. It can also be as complicated and broken as a man getting fingerprinted for a step-parent adoption. He married the love of his life who happened to be a sex abuse victim in her teens from her step-father (close to home or what??). Cancer and chemo. Military veteran who was having a second surgery on his shoulder. Widows. Gender-identity confused individuals. A man with a tattoo behind his ear with the number 666 and cartoonish devil horns and tail. Sex offenders who have been convicted of some really atrocious things. I could go on and on...and that is just from either conversation that was opened up or earthly (physical) observation/knowledge.

I have seen some really amazing things during this fascinating season of work but I have to be completely honest with you. I am sure you can relate when ministering to others that it can be really exhausting. You know that God has called you to help and has brought people into your life that you are supposed to pour into and be a light and example to...to train up and disciple...to intercede for - even for just a moment in time. It is so hard to be vulnerable because it opens up your heart to rejoice and mourn with those around you (Romans 12:15). In the past having issues with depression and anxiety I often times get overwhelmed and it is almost like a defense mechanism goes off inside of me and it says - back away, you aren't equipped to handle this. I get in slumps where I think if I avoid God than He won't ask me to do it anymore. I know this is ugly and wrong. I am the only one (that I know of...it's not like I talk to fingerprinters other than my co-workers) equipped to THIS calling. I have to press in and keep fighting. I have to keep leaning in to the Father who has gifted me for such a time as this and such a WAY as this. I have to stand in the gap for those who come my way because I may be the ONLY one who will.

I've gone a little longer than anticipated and so I want to stop here but next time I will continue on with this #fingerprintrevelations story. So much more to share as God allows. I want to talk about the amazing post and work from Libby recently.

In the comments, can you share some tips that help you overcome the heavy burden of ministering to others? Any Bible verse(s) that keep you going? Also, how has God positioned you in your own specific, unique, and powerful way to minister to those around you everyday?

See, I am doing a new thing!
    Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
    and streams in the wasteland.

--Isaiah 43:19


Conference At Merriman in Garden City, MI

Perhaps for a moment in time, just perhaps, we stood upon holy ground.

 

Matthew 16:19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”

 

I bet many of you know these ladies. They like to hang around SUM! 

SUMite Pillars
Gillian, Teresa, Melissa, Heidi, Joanne

 

Ohio Sumites
Some of the Ohio SUMites: Left to right: Judy, Mindy, Laura, Dawn, Chris

 

Fran Green
This is Beloved, Franie. This conference started in her heart last summer.

 

Lynn Donovan
The Holy Spirit moved. We laughed, cried and we were loved on by our Lord!


Skit
The skit was hilarious. I was cackling. Well done Merriman!
Conference Team
This is the amazing team of leadership that made this day possible. Thank you is inadequate but THANK YOU!

More photos are posted on our SUM Facebook page, click here.

 

The best part of the day is: WE PRAYED. I wish I had a photo to show you what happened at the end of our day. Can anyone who attended share what happened in your heart as you stepped out?

I'm overwhelmed at how the Lord moved on Saturday. Dineen was unable to make it due to her shoulder. So on Thursday I knew that I would speak the entire day. My friends, I can't perform. But I prayed and prayed that our Papa God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit would walk among us and I believe we honored our Lord and He showed up with love and power! I believe lives were touched and I'm teary reading the email messages such as the one at the bottom of this post.

If you were unable to attend, don't feel left out. You are loved and we talked about our amazing community on the web. And now let's pray that Jesus arranges another conference in your area. It would be my humble privilege to meet you, to pray with you and to love on you with our Daddy's love.

Breakfast in the gym
Love these ladies. They were on the front row!!

DSC00088

From Jen:

Lynn,

I do not even know where to begin to thank you. 

I attended your workshop this past Saturday and I am moved beyond words.

When my pastor’s wife invited a small group of us to attend this together I admit I was a little apprehensive.  Not knowing whom she invited I assumed it was only sent to me (or a couple of people) and the other couple of people were nowhere close to my unequal marriage, (so I thought).  I immediately went online and bought your book and WOW!  By the end of just the intros of the both of you, I was in tears, so moved and so motivated. I thought I was the only one in this position, I was alone, I thought nobody understood my marriage, my life, I even questioned my position in my faith and how I possibly could continue to follow Jesus with an unbelieving husband, a daughter 20 years old whom has walked away from Christ and a 13-year-old daughter loving Christ, how could I keep going?

I read the first half of the book in one day and then started over so I could take notes, pages and pages of notes. Ready to register for this workshop, (alone because I figured nobody else in my bible study, church or small group of friends would ever be in the same position I am), the pastor’s wife emailed me again asking if I wanted to go and let me know there were a few others interested. I attended our bible study the next week to tell these women everything I had read and learned up to that point (which was 66% as I am an e book user 😊) and was floored to discover five out of ten women there that night were somewhat in the same position.  Then in our plans for carpooling across the border I find out there was eleven of us going from our church...eleven!!!! Seriously???? I am not alone!!!! So as soon as I got home from the workshop I went directly to your website and signed up, pinned my location and when I looked at all the other pin locations around the world, my heart swelled to see and feel the common love from all over the world.

You were not even five minutes into speaking and I was in tears.  I have come out of this past week with a new light, a renewed hope and joy that is just spilling out of my heart. I went to church this morning and together we found five women sitting alone and we all filled half a row, held hands, hugged, sang to the high heavens and supported and loved on one another like never before. One woman even had an argument with her husband before church today because he did not want to attend anymore and guess who had some loving words of advice for her?  ME!! Little old me! I walk into church today and out of church today with a new song in my heart, a skip in my step and a feeling like I belonged, and better yet, God wanted me there, He loves me! He loves me! He loves me!

So from the bottom of my heart thank you! Thank you for leading me closer to God, thank you for opening my eyes to the women near to me in the same unique position, thank you for introducing me to the thousands of women near and far that feel my pain, my joy, my love and have my back!

Forever indebted and much love, Jen


Are You Stepping Out From Under The Umbrella of God's Protection?

Under the Umbrella series small 400 versionThe response to our series is overwhelmingly enthusiastic. It’s becoming crystal clear that God’s people are yearning to know the truth about whom we battle and how to win. I’m so encouraged by your eagerness and your commitment to the process.

We need to start with understanding the Theater of War of the Kingdom of God.

It’s earth baby!

We are intricately involved in war whether we want to be or not or whether we realize it or not. So it’s WAY past time to put on our armor and recognize that:

Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. —Ephesians 6:12

It’s war. —Move and Countermove

Move: God Created the angelic

Countermove: Lucifer sinned.

Move: God kicked him out of heaven to earth and created people to deal with and subdue the planet and the devil.

Countermove: The serpent deceived Adam and Eve and they forfeited their authority over earth.

Move: Jesus was born. The Godhead came to earth, fully human, to regain the authority for mankind.

Countermove: Satan temps Jesus

Move: Jesus rebukes satan. Satan flees.

Countermove: Satan kills Christ…….

NOW GET THIS!

Move of God: Jesus is resurrected from the dead. Descends to hell and returns with the keys to death and hell (Revelation 1:18) and with the following for all of His followers:

15 He (Jesus) said to them (His followers – US), “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.” —Mark 16:15-18

My friends, the resurrection of Christ was the final move. His perfect life sacrificed, broke the spiritual laws that kept people in bondage and returned authority to people through the blood and name of Jesus. We are protected under the umbrella of God’s love, authority and purposes. So you may ask, “Well then, why do I still struggle so much with sin? Why is there such upheaval and pain in my life if this is true?”

The simple answer?

Because most of us step out from under the umbrella of God’s love and protection and out of His Kingdom. We remain clueless as how to remain under His umbrella and we have no idea how to make Mark 16 a reality in our life.

BUT…… That is about to change. (Queue cheering crowd) Hallelujah Jesus!!!

It’s critical to learn first how to stay under the protection of God who is the ruler of the spiritual & physical realms. We also must learn there are spiritual laws in effect just as there are physical, unbreakable and unchangeable laws in effect such as the law of gravity. In all my research, the pundits aren’t able to explain why God set it up that way but He did. And we were created to live and navigate through both the physical and the spiritual.

Let’s start with the first rule of battle: #1 We must acknowledge that we live in two worlds. The visible and invisible.

Battle Rule #2: Everything that we deal with, all that we face, everything that happens to us is first orchestrated, manifest, and/or created in the spiritual realm before it is evident in the physical realm.

Battle Rule #3: We have everything we need to battle and win this war. It was accomplished at the cross. When Jesus said, “It is finished.” We attained everything we will ever need for abundant living. All was accomplished – Past tense, at the cross!  (John 19:30) (John 10:10)

Battle Rule #4: Fight from victory not for victory. Stay under the umbrella of God’s love and operate in the authority of Jesus and through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Quiet Time Study: (Take these questions to the Lord in your quiet time. Then listen.)

  • Lord, do I truly believe these Battle Rules? Help me to understand and believe.
  • Am I willing to do what it takes to live under the umbrella of God's protection and provision even if I don't know what "all it takes" means right now?
  • Pray: Lord, I ask you to give me supernatural courage and wisdom as I walk through this study. Look up Ephesians 1:17 and pray it every day. Look up and write down Ephesians 6:10-17.
  • If you are journalist or taking notes, the scripture verses in this post are crucial. Look them up and write them down. I've provided links to most of them.

Community Questions (answer in the comments):

  • So how do we stay under the umbrella my friends?
  • What can remove us from the protection of the umbrella? 

I’m going to shed more light on the last two questions Friday. SUMites that is when the hard work begins. But it’s so worth it to live continually under the umbrella and not out in the rain where every drop adds to the rust of our armor and to the pain and struggle of our life.

Step out of the rain. Dawn your armor and your wield your sword. IT’S OUR TURN TO DO SOME DAMAGE TO THE DEVIL AND HIS MINIONS. AMEN JESUS. AMEN!!!

Upcoming posts:

  • Umbrella crushers – The truth about our protection (umbrella)
  • The Devils game – Our identity
  • What is legal permission?
  • Authority
  • The Full Armor of God
  • Demonic structure
  • Defeating lies and restoring truth. Truth=freedom
  • Curses, vows, ancestral encroachment
  • And more…. Much more.

Hang on to your hats because it’s about to get real. Real dangerous for the dark king.

In Jesus name. AMEN

Jesus, as we leave today we ask that you would conceal us from the devil. In Colossians 3:3, you say we are hidden with Christ in God. Hide us and our family from all demonic plans and assignments. We ask to be continually under the umbrella, the wings, of the Most High (Psalm 91) Jesus walk with us and teach us how to live out your commands through your name and authority. We ask that you continually speak to us through the Holy Spirit. Be our hope, our peace and our security this day and forever more. In Your powerful name. AMEN

image from www.spirituallyunequalmarriage.com


God's Dream For Your Life Is Bigger Than You Can Imagine!!

SUMite Nation:

Many of you participated in our Dream With God experience during Rosh Hashanah, 2014. If you didn’t, don’t click out. Because God is up to some crazy, neat stuff and our entire community is part of this.

I thought my “Dream List” was crazy, BIG and filled with impossibilities but this past week, I was praying with a few friends and Christi said to me, “You aren’t praying big enough.” Now SUMites, I’ve been praying:

2 million souls
2 million books
2 million dollars

This seems impossible to me.

But I was so taken back by Christi’s declaration that I spent two days and asked God, “What would you want, Lord? What do you dream? What should I be dreaming?”

Friends, take heed, when you ask God questions like this……. I went a laid down in the afternoon on Friday and over the next two hours God began to down load a vision that is so far beyond my mind that I couldn’t think of it myself. I began to see schools…. Ministry schools, supernatural training of teachers, leaders and every believer who wants more of God. I saw houses of prayer in our valley spring up that will worship God 24/7 and people from all over came to receive prayer, healing and deliverance.

God said, “Two million souls is way too small. Lynn, dream and contend for ONE BILLION SOULS.” The harvest is rich but the workers are few. Pray to the Lord of the Harvest and train those to bring the broken, the demonized, the sick the proud, the poor into My House.” Pray for the resources. $10 million to start.

(By this point I’m in spiritual shock and awe.)

Then I heard a name or a type of another school that God was wanting. I keep hearing “Gregorian.” I don’t know what that means so when I woke, I Googled the word. There are many meanings such as our Gregorian calendar and it’s a name of a rock band. But what I saw that grabbed my attention was there was a Pope named Pope Gregory… He was a good Pope who was born 540 years after Christ. Now get this. He is the patron saint of musicians, singers, students, and teachers.

I about fell off my chair. The second school that God wants is a school of music… A WORSHIP SCHOOL. For students and for teachers. Duh!!! Worship is at the core of my heart. I’m happiest when in worship. Sometimes I’m soooo blonde! Sheesh!

Gang, I’ve been humbly contending to just get my next book approved by the Publishing Committee. (Which I still contending) But I’ve been dreaming way too small. I serve the God of the Universe of all time and eternity. And He can do this.

Do I have a clue how? NO. But I believe right now He is connecting me with people who have connections who will share His vision for the future of His Kingdom. I can’t wait to see how this all comes together.

On Friday, the Lord told me to write this down. It is my vision for my future and I’m to share it, read it often, keep it at the forefront of my prayers and thoughts. So here it is. I will post further in detail in a new website I’m going to launch soon.

Okay, so NOW I say to each of you my SUMite brothers and sisters. Did you dream with me last fall? If you did, have you checked your lists lately and thanked God for His faithful fulfilments? At this time also renew your prayers for those dreams yet to come to pass.

Right now, I believe the Lord is calling all of us to once again write down our dreams, our vision, for our purposes to bring His Kingdom to earth. So, right now make it plain. Go into your quiet time. Ask God again to dream with you. No, to give you His dreams!

Matthew 9 36 38Write it down. Share what pops into your mind right now in the comments and make a public declaration of what and where God is leading you. We are walking in an anointed time and I ABSOLUTELY believe our community was born for such a time as this.

I love you so much. I can’t wait to read what the Lord is placing on your heart. Let’s dream BIGGER SUMite nation. There are a billions souls waiting to experience the love of Jesus, His healing, freedom and the abundant life. End of days are upon us. Let’s bust out the truth and bring it to our world who needs to experience perfect love.

See you in the comments. Share any and all that the Holy Spirit is impressing upon you. Nothing is too weird, too big, too great or outlandish. Love you, Lynn

Here is the link to the original post: Dream Big.

PS. My Biggest dream: My husband and family meet and fall in love with Jesus, The King of Kings!


Pray With Power

image from www.spirituallyunequalmarriage.comI believe. I’ve decided that I believe the Bible. I believe the sun and moon stood still and there has never been a day like that before or since then. But I believe that if God tells me to command the sun, He will surely do it. And He will send the hailstones as well if that will serve His purposes.

What is mind-blowing about all this revelation in the past week about locks, lockers, keys and such is the GIANT breakthroughs in my life that came with it. Personal breakthroughs such as losing weight, a long area of defeat for me. Breakthrough in writing and other areas. I finally found a new church for which I had been praying for months. My husband attended church. I’ve prayed over him, literally saying, “I blast you with the Holy Spirit.” And this past week, in church, he raised his hand toward the platform as we prayed corporately over a family. Say What? Who is this man?

I tell you he is a man for whom I will never stop “loosing” the Kingdom over his life. I remain hopeful through the Resurrection power that one day SOON he will step into the Kingdom of Jesus Christ. And I will never stop praying for that glorious day!

My friends, I’m convinced in the depths of my soul and so is Dineen that we are living in a unique period of time never seen before nor again. We as believers are positioned to be part of the greatest outpourings of His love and power on earth since the time of Christ.

If you are a reader here, you have been sent here by design. (AMEN!) I’m convinced that the Lord is holding out your key of invitation to step into this time of great preparation. Jump in with both feet. No, I say: Jump off the cliff and BELIEVE He will catch you. Take the keys from His hands and together we shall loose on earth His love and healing. We will bind lies, death, disease, marriage troubles, relationship difficulties, tears, cruelty, fear, depression, sickness and frailty as well as every other mission of the demonic realm. In Jesus name.

So let’s begin right now. Pray with me:

Lord Jesus,

Today this family on the web, who by design is strategically disbursed throughout the planet arises with Joshua courage to fight and DEFEAT the enemy. We are honored that you have trusted us with the keys of the Kingdom. Give us now your Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation to use these keys to open gates that must be opened and to shut those that must be shut upon the demonic realm.

Lord, make us fearless.

Papa, God, make us strong as we stand in faith.

Papa, Almighty God, fill us with a fierce love that knocks down every wall and releases your kingdom here on earth.

Lord, we thrill to see the daily miracles which we will be apart. We expect You to speak to us so that we know your thoughts and wishes. We pledge you our time, our heart, our life, loyalty, worship and love. Forever and ever. We ask you to heal us quickly that we may then bring your healing to the world. And they will know we are Christians by our love.

We adore you. Thank you. And stand in faith… of a mustard seed. In Jesus name. Amen.

PRAY WITH POWER. Hugs, Lynn

image from www.spirituallyunequalmarriage.com


Stop The Sun and Holy Goosies!

Matt 16 18 19SUMite Nation:

Our favor, as Kingdom people, is dawning. If you remember from Monday’s post, the Lord has me camped on the passage in Matthew 16.

And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
—Matthew 18:18-19 KJV

Sometimes I love to read scripture in the King’s English.

Let me take you back to Monday’s post. I remind you that I’m camped in my spirit upon the implications of believing the passage above and then I arrived in my daily reading at Joshua chapter 10. I do hope you read Joshua 10 on Monday. This is the part that came alive in my soul.

On the day the Lord gave the Amorites over to Israel, Joshua said to the Lord in the presence of Israel:

“Sun, stand still over Gibeon,
    and you, moon, over the Valley of Aijalon.”
So the sun stood still,
    and the moon stopped,
    till the nation avenged itself on its enemies,
as it is written in the Book of Jashar.

The sun stopped in the middle of the sky and delayed going down about a full day. There has never been a day like it before or since, a day when the Lord listened to a human being. Surely the Lord was fighting for Israel! (NIV)

Why in the world, after reading God’s Word through every year since 1999, haven’t I “seen” this passage before, I have yet to understand. However, the implications are amazing.

I did some research regarding this phenomenon.

Leading up to this astonishing event we find Joshua and his armies are taking possession of the Promised Land. The battle that precedes this event was a culmination of five kingdoms who joined forces and were positioned to defeat the Gibeonites who were in covenant with Israel. The people of the area send an urgent plea to Joshua to defend their towns. So, here is where it gets interesting. Joshua and the armed forces march all night to arrive at the battle. They traveled 20 miles thus they arrive physically taxed. They took the opposing kingdoms by surprise, fought all day and then the defeated army begins to flee.

Joshua’s troops pursue and chase them down. I love this little tidbit of the story. As the fled and God joined in. God hurled hailstones down upon them. More died from the hail than from the sword. SAY WHAT?.... Holy Goosies!

However, many still were able to flee and Joshua realized evening was nearing. If the opposing army were to find safety in the darkness, they would regroup and then have an upper hand the following day.

So what does a man of God do? He looks up to the sun and moon and commands them to stay in the sky! Therefore because the sun did not set, they had enough time and strength left to soundly defeated five wicked Kingdoms in a single day.

Can I just say, “Whoa!”

And I will add that the Word of God says in verse 14 there has never been a day like it before or since, a day when the LORD listened to a human being. Surely the Lord was fighting for Israel!

There are a few theories about this unique day in the Word such as: The Lord slowed the earth’s rotation along with the moon. So a 24 hour period was stretched to nearly a 48 hour period. And it’s interesting that at the time Joshua adds a side note: as it is written in the Book of Jashar. This book is lost to us now but scholars believe it is a book referenced several times in scripture. Its title when translated is; The Book Of The Upright or The Book of the Upright Man. Fascinating. I just wonder if in these last days, this ancient book may be discovered somewhere in a clay pot, possibly in a cave in the Judean desert. (Oh the things I like to ponder *grin*.)

Anyhoo, what in the world does this ancient story have to do with us?

As I read this passage and the Holy Spirit gave revelation (Ephesian 1:17), I realized that this kind of power that was released to stop the earth’s rotation and cause the moon to stand still is the same power of the resurrection.

Now my question to you is this? As current day believers, do we have this kind of power? And here is the kicker question: Do you think we should want this power? Is it sinful? Or prideful?

I have much more for us to ponder my friends. See you in the comments. I LOVE LIVING THE BELEIVER’S LIFE!!!! Love you my SUMite family. 

image from www.spirituallyunequalmarriage.com


Keys To The Kingdom - Part I

SUMites:

I have a thing about keys.

Last week I believe the Lord poured out revelation upon me regarding keys and their significance in the Kingdom. I also believe that the revelation was not only specific to myself but also to others.

Way back in 2009 I penciled together an idea for a book. That book was centered on 10 keys. Winning Him Without Words, was the result and the keys became profound in my life and by default, in a lot of other lives who have read the book and will read the book. Then last year I had a dream. I rarely remember my dreams but on this particular night I dreamt that Jesus handed me three keys. I could clearly see bronze skeleton keys. It was obvious to me they were tarnished and ancient. I knew somehow they were large and weighty.

That’s all I remember about the dream. I called Dineen and told her about it and that I didn’t know the purpose of the keys. It’s one of those things that you hold in your heart, just as Mary held special thoughts about Jesus in her heart. Months passed. The picture in my mind remained of these three keys. Then one day I read a passage in Romans. This passage has nothing to do with keys or at least that’s what I thought. However, the minute I read it, I just knew. These were the keys Jesus placed in my hands.

For the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. —Romans 14:17

The three keys are Righteousness, Peace and Joy.

Do you know what the keys unlock?

Well, it was months later after a season of prayer asking the Lord to reveal their meaning that I came to know these specific characteristics; peace, joy, righteousness, are attributes of heaven. The atmosphere of heaven! Now, I don’t fully understand the profound significance of all this. I believe I’m still uncovering how to use the keys and learning what they unlock specifically and such. But, I am living more and more in this kind of atmosphere here on earth.

Finally, in my new book I write about the combination lock which I also shared in a post here in November. And guess what? Yes, the new book is about keys!

Yep, locks, lockers, keys, unlocking and locking are prominent in my growing faith. Finally this past week, I was out in the vineyards on my walk-n-pray and that was when the Holy Spirit downloaded the revelation. I called Dineen and practically wore her out with my excitement over this revelation. But what I forgot is the reason this revelation finally came about was because of a lock I found back in January. I shared a photo of it on Facebook that day and I shared the photo again in the SUM comments on Monday. Here it is for you to see.

Master unlocked

Last week as I walked along the vineyard road, the Lord revealed the meaning of the clues. And what I failed to remember was Dineen and several others found locks around the same time that I found mine. (Side note: I found this lock sitting on the fence post, unlocked. Notice it’s old and also notice the word: Master. Joanne pointed out that little bit of intrigue to me. I hadn’t noticed it said, Master. Hmmmm) Okay, onward.

At the center of Becoming Brave is the passage Matthew 16:18-19

Jesus said: …”Upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”

MY FRIENDS!!!!! The implications of how all this comes together, simply freaks me out.

I came home supercharged with faith. Now let me tell you about the passage I read that morning before my walk. I’ve read the Bible through since 1999 and I haven’t remembered reading this specific passage until that morning. This passage blows my mind and was the final piece of the revelation.

Read Joshua 10:1-14 and we will pick up this story on Friday. It’s a mind-blow. And this story is for us. I will explain.

This week I want you to pray over these particular passages of scripture, Matthew 16:18-19 and Joshua 10:1-14. I’m praying along with you because I believe these passages are for us, believers right now, today. The implications are staggering and so exciting.

Leave your thoughts in the comments. See you there. Hugs, Lynn

Signature Lynn SUM