We had such a lovely time praying for our community on Wednesday, including our spouses and children. If missed it, you can catch up here.
... And have a great weekend!
We had such a lovely time praying for our community on Wednesday, including our spouses and children. If missed it, you can catch up here.
... And have a great weekend!
I often think it's great to use scripture in our prayers sometimes. That way we know that the words we speak in prayer are spot-on.
Of course, there are many other ways to pray too, like having a big heart-to-heart chat with God. But using scripture is one creative little thing we can do; it's a specific prayer strategy.
With scripture, what we can do is take certain truths, turns of phrase, or key words, and speak them out. It is powerful to do that.
I remember once in church a minister came up to me and spoke a single line of scripture over me as a prayer. I fell over there and then!! Literally, the power of the Holy Spirit knocked me to my knees. All she did was speak a line of scripture.
That has never happened to me before or since, but it taught me a big lesson about just how powerful the word of God is.
Anyway, there are all kinds of scriptures that can be used creatively as a basis for a prayer and today I thought I would look at a particular passage that applies to our unsaved loved ones: The Parable of the Sower.
I say that parable is appropriate to our loved ones because it's all about what's going on in people's hearts when they don't believe. That parable explains why some people don't receive the Gospel, and why some people fall away even after they have been strong Christians. That last one is sobering. I often come back to this parable and re-read it, just to help myself understand.
The parable goes like this --
“A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. Whoever has ears, let them hear.” (Matthew 13:3-9, NIV)
Then Jesus interpreted that story:
“Listen then to what the parable of the sower means: When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart. This is the seed sown along the path. The seed falling on rocky ground refers to someone who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful. But the seed falling on good soil refers to someone who hears the word and understands it. This is the one who produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.” (Matthew 13:8-23, NIV)
It's such a helpful parable, I love it. But it's even richer when we turn it into a prayer strategy. If we take the above truths and turn them into prayer for our spouse, we can pray like this:
"In the Name of Jesus:
Dear friends, how about we pray these things for our spouses and children this weekend?
It's Ann here, and today I wanted to share some words that we can pray out loud for our families -- Words I'll share in a minute.
Our families are our land, much like the land that the Israelites fought for. Like the Israelites we have to fight for them, boot the giants out, that's Satan and his minions, and bring the Kingdom to that territory.
"But the land which you cross over to possess is a land of hills and valleys, which drinks water from the rain of Heaven, a land for which the Lord your God cares; the eyes of the Lord your God are always on it, from the beginning of the year to the very end of the year." (Deuteronomy 11:11-12, NKJV)
It's often a long road to fight for our loved ones, a prayer battle of years. And in battling on our knees sometimes we need new ideas, a little variety, and fresh words.
So here's a creative way that we can pray today. It actually comes in the form of a song. The song is called Lord Send Revival by Hillsong Young and Free, and its words are a prayer and plea to the God of the Heavenly Armies for a particular territory.
Can I suggest you find a quiet corner, put on the song and speak or sing it as a prayer specifically for your family? The lyrics are here, and a video of the song is below. I'll be doing that too this afternoon as this post goes live.
Happy praying, and may our joint prayers come up for a memorial before God (Acts 10:4).
Peace like a river, wash over me.
Immerse me in water as deep as the sea.
Hide me in love your healing embrace.
Peace like a river, wash over me.
As I worship Your majesty,
I worship Your Holy Name,
Jesus my everything,
All that I am is Yours.
Come Holy Spirit, rain down on me (I feel his presence as I type that!)
Break open the Heavens and drench the unseen.
Pour out Your presence as I pour out your praise
Come Holy Spirit, Lord have your way.
Open the Heavens, fling wide the gates
Flood every heart with mercy
Pour out your presence, inhabit our praise
As we cry Holy Holy
Lord send revival, Lord send it now
A move of your Spirit, Heaven break out
Come now in power, cover this land
Like you've done it before
Would you do it again.
As far back as I can remember the SUMite Nation has fasted together the first full week of January. Well, at least for more than a decade now. That's amazing!
I’m convinced that any type of fast we offer the Lord, opens up the prayer line to our Father. However, a genuine food fast, in the manner that Jesus speaks, is truly life-changing.
Today, set your mind to fast with all of us.
The fast begins Monday, January 3rd at sunup. Fasting concluded on Friday, January 7th at sundown. If at all possible, fast solid foods through the entire week. End the week with the Lord’s Supper (Recipe below).
Or offer a daily fast from solid foods from sunup to sundown, taking the Lord’s Supper at the end of the day (recipe below).
Or fast sunup and then a small meal at night with the family. And finally, I urge you, fast time away from your phone and devices. Avoid television if you can and put your phone down. Don’t take your phone into your quiet time (this is a reminder to myself, ack!!!).
Fasting is a humbling process. It’s not arm twisting the Lord. But when we are humbled, our prayers become the loudest. Humility and honor are the keys to an audience with the King.
In addition to fasting. Get a large candle. Light it each morning and leave it in a room where you will see the flame flickering often. Each time you see the flame, pray.
Jesus, what is your favorite thing about me?
Jesus, what word are you speaking over my life in this season?
Jesus, how can I pray with more effectiveness for my family? Home, Church, City, Nation?
Jesus, what areas exist in my life that give our enemy legal rights to oppress me? My children? My Spouse? Nation?
Jesus, how to I gain freedom in these areas?
Okay, finally, in the comments, I want you to state to the enemy: I AM PRAYING AND FASTING.
Here is the recipe. Thank you for my great friend, Jeanne Ritari! Jean, you ROCK! I’ve made this bread and it truly will bring you closer to the reality of communion and the love of Jesus.
Oven 400 F/ 200 C
Warm the milk and dissolve the honey in it. In a medium bowl, stir the flour into the milk and add a pinch of salt. Combine well and knead very briefly (only enough to incorporate the flour.)
Divide dough into 6 or 8 equal parts. Form each part into a ball and pat or roll into a rough circle. Divide into four or six triangles using a knife or pizza cutter. Place on a baking sheet (I use parchment paper to avoid sticking.) Repeat with all the balls of dough (you may need more than one baking sheet.) Prick all the discs several times with a fork.
Place the baking sheet in a hot oven for 15 minutes. Remove and let cool. Store in refrigerator (it keeps for several days), or wrap unused portion well and freeze until needed.
My friends, Ann here.
I have a problem. Here I am writing a series on how to fight giants using the example of some fear I've been battling … But this week the fear has gone completely! So, that's inconvenient because I'm trying to write about it. Maybe the giant wasn't enjoying the fight and ran away. ((Haha!))
Resist the devil and he will flee from you (James 4:7, NIV)
It's true. As my fingers have typed words about how small giants are I’ve become increasingly fearless. To the point that I feel I've been injected with happy drugs!!
And, in that state, we've reached the part in our series where David picked up five stones to kill Goliath.
“Then he took his staff in his hand, chose five smooth stones from the stream, put them in the pouch of his shepherd's bag and, with his sling in his hand, approached the Philistine.” (1 Samuel 17:40, NIV)
This passage could be seen as an analogy for spiritual warfare in a Christian’s life. It’s easy to think ‘spiritual warfare’ has to be big and dramatic, but it’s mainly fought in the secret place, the place of intimacy with God.
It can even be a restful battle, if we can get there. The stones are smooth, after all, and manageable.
I keep a pouch of five stones in my prayer room (TV room) as a symbol, I suppose. And I have an idea of what my top five regular stones (i.e., spiritual warfare tools) are. One is fasting, another is rest. Another, taking communion in my home.
But there are probably 25 'stones' (i.e., tools) available to us, not just five. And in our community others will have a different 'top five' to me because, as an army, we have different skill-sets, gifts, and experiences.
I therefore posted a question on Facebook, asking our community what their top five are. Here’s what they said, including their quotes. I personally found these wonderful to read, and I hope you do too.
The five smooth stones of the SUM community:
Worship. Private time spent in worship invites in the Lord’s presence and power; but even playing worship music in the background changes the atmosphere (2 Chronicles 20:21-22).
Praise and gratitude. Speaking out or journaling such words (Psalm 100:4)
Asking for prayer and support from trusted prayer partners/friends. Sometimes we're too embattled to pray for ourselves except to eek out 'help'. A solid two or three, or a group (e.g., church home-group) who really care about your situation is like a strong, three-fold cord (Ecclesiastes 4:12). As is their emotional support.
Prayer. This is a huge topic, but it can include specific routines like praying on the armor of Ephesians 6:10-17 routinely, binding the enemy's activity and releasing glory and blessing verbally into a situation (Matthew 18:18); blessing the house, the bed, and more.
Healing prayer from a trusted source. Our battle may have at its source underlying spiritual issues (e.g., generational stuff, freemasonry in the family) that can be revealed and healed through prayer with a trained person. We're blessed to have access to that here with Lynn's healing prayer ministry.
Reading the Bible, and quoting scripture out loud, confessing God's truths and promises. Here's a great quote: "Throw a scripture stone to combat whatever battle you are currently facing. If it is healing, throw all the scriptures verses as a stone."
Surrender to the Lord, exchanging our will for His. A couple of SUMites said here, "The fruits are like no other".
Journaling. I loved this quote: "I put it all down on paper or computer the situation, including my feelings, and the Lord walks me through it. Then I can throw away everything except the lesson learned."
Time and intimacy with God. "Long walks outside with the Lord / Getting up early to be with him." "Walk n pray along with sitting on the beach and asking Jesus to be with me." This overlaps with other things.
And more, but I'm out of space:
Delight in Him
Revisiting prophetic words we have received
Distraction from triggers
Praying in tongues
SUMites, we are equipped and we're up to the task. For the stones are manageable.
Next time I write I'll continue with this series. For now: Do any of the above tools intrigue you and make you want to know more? If so, which ones?
Have a great weekend, everyone!
We’re in a series about what goes into belief vs. unbelief. Part one was about free will, and I loved reading your comments. Today I want to talk about another factor: The influence of the demonic.
One of the earliest questions I had for God was, “Is Satan really real?” It was one thing to believe in God, but to believe in Satan and demons was a notch further. It raised so many questions for me.
Apart from scripture, what ultimately led me to believe Satan was real was that a few trusted people I know (seasoned Christians) have encountered demons. Plain and simple. That was a start. I've since had several times of my own where I've heard a demon speak in a particular situation. Interestingly, it’s never scared me.
I deliberately try not to give the devil glory in speaking about a situation. I'd rather talk about what Jesus is doing. However, the fact is that Satan is the god of this world, so privately I take absolute notice of his activities. "I've got my eyes on you -- I know the power of the blood of Jesus, and you're toast!" I say to him behind the scenes. When faced with an unbeliever, then, that’s where I go: What has the enemy done in this person’s life?
Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God. (2 Corinthians 4:4, NLT)
These precious people who currently do not believe are clay in God’s hands. We can work on the assumption that God wants all to be saved (1 Timothy 2:4). What's more, although God has sovereign plans and timings for things, he might have designed someone to be a vessel of honor, and the enemy might be trying to bar the clay.
That is, in fact, a word the Holy Spirit gave me a few weeks ago: The enemy tries to bar the clay.
In this word, barring the clay, for me it brings an image to mind where the enemy is constructing prisons around people to come between them and their Kingdom destiny. To bar them from becoming what they can be: A son or daughter of God.
The Good News, of course, is that Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil (1 John 3:8). Hallelujah! By the power of Jesus's blood, the enemy can shrivel up into a helpless ball and disappear from a situation. IF we learn how to boot him out. Yes, Jesus asks us to cast out demons with the authority he has given us (Mark 16:17). For some seasoned ministers, this is a real calling and they understand the demonic realm and directly come against it. For the rest of us, we need to know that it can happen on the floor of our living rooms as we bind the enemy in our private prayers.
It can look like this, spoken by a humble mother on her knees:
“I know who I am in the Kingdom of Heaven. I take my authority in Jesus’ name and I bind the antichrist spirit in this particular situation.”
Then, we follow by releasing life with our very tongue:
“I pray for this person's intimacy with you Lord!
I release hope! I release faith! I release love in their life!” And so on. And so on.
My friends, that's what our prayers are doing in the Heavenly realm: Breaking those bars open, releasing people from enemy imprisonment. Hallelujah to that!
I’ll pause there; but next time I'm going to talk about the role of God’s plan in a person’s life.
For now, here's a question: How familiar do you feel with this area of praying against the enemy? Have you seen success when you have prayed in that way?
There are times we need to lean on other’s prayers. And today, I have a prayer that God gave me recently to pray for my home and family. Lean on it. Pray it aloud in your prayer time. Pray it often. It truly is from the Lord. Save it in your notes on your phone. Take it out and pray it as often as God reminds. Hugs, Lynn
Father, I come in the name of Jesus to Your Mercy Seat today to receive mercy and help. Today, I ask You, Father, to bless my home with the Shalom of heaven. Bless my family with divine health. Protect all of us from all evil assaults against our bodies, soul, spirit, mind, will and emotions.
Lord, decree and bless my marriage that we operate intentionally within a partnership of unity. Bless us with the spirit of mutual honor, love, respect and kindness. Bless our marriage to be filled with a spirit of cooperation and unity. Bless us to love one another with our words and our body language.
Lord bless my children with curiosity, with self-discipline and help me to also cultivate creativity, independence and self-responsibility and a hunger for God within their minds and hearts.
Bless us with a fierce protection and love for one another. Bless us to smile, to laugh and to uplift each other. Bless us with Your Presence and speak into our lives Your hope, truth and goodness.
In Jesus’ name. AMEN
SUMites, Lynn again. Some of you know that I offer Healing Prayer and Spiritual Mentoring. I was so blessed to spend some time praying with a SUMite, Vidya Rodney. I was talking with her about the power of blessings, which I write about in Marching Around Jericho.
She put together a prayer of blessings to pray over her husband. It's FANTASTIC. If you even speak only a few of these each day in your prayer time, you will make a significant change in the spiritual over your home, marriage and husband. Try them out.
Proverbs 18:21a- The tongue has the power of life and death.
Luke 10:19- I have given you the authority to trample on all snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.
Isaiah 55:11- So shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and it shall succeed in the thing in which I sent it.
Job 22:28-You shall also decide and decree a thing, and it shall be established for you; and the light (of God's favor) shall shine upon your ways.
Mark 11:23- Truly I Say to you, whoever says to this mountain, “be taken up and thrown into the sea," and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him.
Romans 4:17- As it is written," I have made you a father of many nations."-in the presence of God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist.
Ezekiel 37:4- Then he said to me, “Speak a prophetic message to these bones and say "Dry Bones hear the word of the Lord!
A couple of weeks ago , Lynn and I had a healing meeting and I was given specific prayer strategies from heaven to declare prayers of blessings over my husband and here are my prayer declarations of blessings over my husband, me (his wife) and our marriage covenant.
My dear Sumites, I believe with all my heart that we have the power to change our circumstance with our words and declarations, so almost every day I pray these prayers of blessings and I pray it would bless you. You can edit to suit your situation.
I bless my husband with a new spirit and tender, responsive heart in Jesus name.
I bless my husband with the mind, thoughts, will of the father, feelings, and purposes of Jesus Christ in Jesus name.
I bless my husband to be a man of integrity in everything he does and his hand touches in Jesus name.
I bless my husband to love me like Christ loves the church in Jesus name.
I bless my husband with the perfect love of Jesus Christ that expels all fear in Jesus name.
I Bless my husband to be the man that honors our marriage covenant in Jesus name.
I bless my husband with the fruits of the spirit- love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control in Jesus name.
I bless my husband with humility and tenderhearted mercy towards me and others in Jesus name.
I bless my husband to submit his will to God the Father in Jesus name. I bless my husband to have a teachable spirit that will allow the Holy Spirit to minister to him in Jesus name.
I bless my husband to think of thoughts that are true, lovely, pure, right, honorable, admirable, and praiseworthy in Jesus name.
I bless my husband, so that his heart will be ready to receive the perfect laborer across his path in Jesus name.
I bless my husband with Godly mentors at his workplace, in his extra-curricular activities and hobbies in Jesus name.
I bless my husband to open his spiritual eyes to see how god sees and his spiritual ears to hear when Jesus speaks to him in Jesus name. I bless my husband to see Jesus at his workplace, on his YouTube videos, to encounter miraculous signs and wonders in Jesus name.
I bless his boss and his bosses’ s boss in Jesus name. I bless my husband's hands to prosper at everything he does in Jesus name. I bless him with supernatural favor at his workplace in Jesus name.
I bless my husband with the abundance of financial favor to be a cheerful giver in Jesus name.
I bless my husband with supernatural protection from any form of temptation and for his spiritual ears and eyes to be heightened to walk the righteous path in Jesus name. I bless him with the spirit of discernment in Jesus name.
I bless my husband to receive revelation knowledge of Jesus as his Lord and Savior in Jesus name.
I bless my husband to receive the kingdom of god and to participate in the works and purposes recorded in his book before time began in Jesus name.
I bless to be a man of integrity in everything he does in Jesus name.
I bless my husband with the angel armies with flaming swords to guard, protect and preserve his life in Jesus name.
I bless him with the holy ring of fire of protection surrounding him and keeping him from all forms of temptation in Jesus name.
I bless him to have a supernatural encounter with Jesus Christ that will change his life forever in Jesus name.
I bless my husband with the wisdom of Jesus to be the husband and father God has called him to be in Jesus name.
I bless my husband to let his guard down and discover the freedom in Jesus Christ that he desperately needs in Jesus name.
I bless our marriage covenant with healthy communication, mutual respect, transparency, commitment, agape love, understanding and trust and I seal it in the heavenly realms in Jesus name.
I bless our marriage covenant with the Shalom of Heaven and seal it in the heavenly realms in Jesus name.
I bless our marriage covenant with humility, selflessness, kindness, tenderhearted mercy, quick forgiveness and with cords that cannot be broken in Jesus name.
I bless our marriage bed to be kept pure with love and intimacy.
I bless my husband to desire me and find me irresistibly attractive in Jesus name.
I bless my husband to understand how high, how deep and how wide is the Love of God for him in, Jesus name.
I bless our marriage covenant between my husband and I and I seal it in the heavenly realms in Jesus name. I bless our home with the Shalom of Heaven in Jesus name.
I bless my husband with the tools, wisdom, and strength to overcome burdens and to tread on the right path in Jesus name.
I bless my husband to be a wise steward of our finances in Jesus name.
I bless my husband with the courage of Jesus to stay away from uncompromising choices. I bless him with supernatural wisdom to make right decisions in Jesus name.
I bless my husband to be a wise, good, and kind father to our child in Jesus name.
I bless myself his wife to be his help meet in Jesus name.
I bless myself his wife to honor and respect him with my words, thoughts, and actions in Jesus name.
I bless myself his wife, to do him good , and not harm, all the days of his life in Jesus name.
Be blessed and be blessing happy!
I am Vidya Rodney. Married to my pre-believing husband Andrew for 10 years. We have a beautiful 5 year old little girl Anya. I live in St Charles ,Missouri and first accepted Jesus in 2011 after losing our only brother to suicide. I have been a lukewarm Christian for years, but now I am stepping out to find out more of what Jesus has for me.
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.
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.
“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.
“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.
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.
There is grace.
If you didn’t quite make it, there is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus.
So, start again and finish strong. And for the many who have continued steadfast, press in because this is a breakthrough day for everyone!
Pray: I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. —Ephesians 3:16-19
Today is “revival day” and “divine reversal day.”
In the comments make your declaration over the areas in your life that need revival and reversal. Here are mine. (Lynn Donovan)
I declare in the Mighty Name of Jesus, my Savior and Advocate that I will advance the Kingdom of God. My husband will be saved, set free and proclaim Jesus is Lord. I declare my children and grandchildren will be sold out for Jesus and they will walk in His love and power. I declare that my writing will advance to greater levels of compassion, revelation and power, that lives are changed, and people come to know the healing and love of Jesus Christ. I declare a complete reversal of all assignments of the enemy, delays in my writing and teaching projects and decree all witchcraft and evil SHALL NOT STAND IN MY PRESENCE. I declare that I will love people with more empathy, guard my language to be salt and light and be intentional to sew goodness and reap goodness in my life and in the lives of those I interact online and in person.
I declare my Father is good. Every day, in every way. Jesus is my advocate, Rabbi, teacher, friend and healer. I stand in the power of the Holy Spirit to bring heaven to earth as proclaimed in the Lord’s prayer. In Jesus mighty and powerful name. AMEN
Okay, your turn. Make your declaration for all of heaven to see and the angelic to move upon. We are nearing the end of the fast but the beginning of NEWNESS in life!! Can I get an AMEN?
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:
1 The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
3 He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.
4 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.
5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord
*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.*
5 God has gone up with a shout,
The Lord with the sound of a trumpet.
6 Sing praises to God, sing praises!
Sing praises to our King, sing praises!
7 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.
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.
Welcome 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.
Step 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.
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.
PRE Fast Day TWO
Question: Do you know what to do while you fast?
What am I supposed to do? Do I pray normally, pray more? Do I just sit in silence? Do I just starve myself and hope something happens?
Perhaps some of you are scratching your head just like I did a few years ago.
I want to share some insights that make your fast powerful and effective.
Make time every morning to rise before the house wakes, go into your prayer place with your Bible, journal and any other book that you are reading to grow in your faith. Open up your spirt by inviting the Lord to come in. Give God your heart and ask Him to speak to you. Start your prayer time with worship, or/and prayer language, or/and surrender.
Read a chapter or verses in your daily reading. If you don’t have a reading plan, read chapters from the book of Matthew, specifically the chapters where Jesus is teaching. Listen to the promises that jump out at you and WRITE THEM DOWN. Write that date and write a prayer that you claim this promise for your life. For example, I’m always move by this passage:
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 16:19
This promise ROCKS my world. I’ve used this passage to bind my heart to God’s heart. I’ve used it to loose angels to dispatch the demonic to the pit of hell. I speak this passage in faith and I ask Jesus to give me more keys and teach me how to use them to unlock the Kingdom of God.
This is just one example. There are so many that I just get excited to speak them out and watch what happens.
Pray prayers that others have written. For example, during last year’s fast we read through the book, Winning Them With Prayer. It was powerful and praying aloud the prayers written in the book brought about change for many of you. Get it out and read it again. Or if you are new with us and want powerful prayers to pray during the fast, order it from Amazon.
Tomorrow I’ll share with you how to respond to our growing hunger throughout the day.
Pray now for the resolve of the Holy Spirit to walk with you through this fast because right now the veil is very thin between earth and heaven. It’s NOW that our petitions with prayer and fasting are bringing us before the Throne. In Jesus name. AMEN
Love you, Lynn
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. —Matthew 5:6
My precious friends, last week God dropped this into my spirit and I've held it close, waiting for Him to tell me to share it. So read this and receive it from His heart to yours.
Love you so much!
This is My time of restoration and establishing My children in My timeline for them.
Look for the revelations of My heart, of My love. I have situated you in the midst of these revelations. One simply has to look.
There is no need or room for doubt. Remember, My love conquers all and My love lives in you—My Son. That is what makes you more than a conqueror. You are My child. Mine.
My love far outweighs the cares of this world and all the burdens you perceive. Apply My love to every one of them—to everything—like a salve. The name of Jesus and My love are one in the same. Understand this and you will have the greatest weapon, prayer strategy, comfort and peace than you have every known or realized.
Let Me reassure you of this: You lack nothing. I do not ill-equip My children. You have everything you need already. Just believe and tap into it. Ask and receive. It is My delight to give it to you.
Now is not the time to squander what I’ve given you by living in fear and doubt. Even in the remnants of your mind there can be no place for this. Not when I’ve given you everything. Everything. The very heavens are yours! Why else would I teach you to pray “on earth as it is in heaven”?
You are completely established in My righteousness. From this place you cannot fail. I’ve set you up for complete success. Be bold. Have fun. Walk in wonder.
And above all, know My goodness is perfect, unflawed—brilliant like a perfect diamond. I’m giving you jewels, my children, I’m giving you jewels.
My friends, I loved your comments from my post on Monday. Several of you shared you would really like to know more about the Greek meanings of the words I’m researching, so please know that I’m thinking and praying about how to do that best. Right now I think a video would be easiest to explain and bring these treasures to life, so stay posted.
Today, let’s start talking about where we “sit” with God. Let’s take a look at Ephesians. The first chapter of Ephesians is all about our identity, who were are as new creations in Christ Jesus and what we’ve been given as our inheritance in Him.
Many of you shared in the survey that you wanted to understand more about our identity in Christ as well. Knowing and understanding these truths is very important to the sturdiness of our “seat,” especially where and how we “sit” in our mismatched marriages. In taking these truths into our spirit by studying, praying and believing them, we will operate from a greater place of influence in our homes and marriages simply by living our lives according to these truths.
Take a look at this list of who YOU are right from Ephesians 1.
SUMites, this is what Jesus died to give us, our complete identity in Him. And not only that. He gave us His Spirit, the Holy Spirit, as a seal and guarantee of our inheritance.
In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory. — Eph 1:13-14
Christ Jesus has done all this for us so that we can be with Him and He can be with us. The veil separating man from God was both literally and figuratively torn upon His death to make this possible. Yet we still tend to think a type of physical separation remains, but God’s Word says otherwise.
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. — Eph 2:19-22
Read these verses carefully. God didn’t just want to save us, He also wants us with Him. And not just in eternity, but in an abiding relationship with Him always. When we understand that we are secure in our value, worth and God’s great love for us, we become more and more Christ-like in our faith, courage, integrity and strength. We begin to reflect the very characteristics of Jesus, and if you read the gospels, He was irresistible! People were drawn to Him. They saw the hope and promise He carried and they wanted it.
My friends, this is exactly why God always starts with us, the believing spouse, in a mismatched marriage. We are a conduit of His love and grace, we are a representation of His character, and we are the source of His delight. And we don’t do any of this. He does.
So this is where we start in releasing our spouses identity in Jesus, by living in belief and faith that we are God’s children, given the full inheritance in Christ Jesus.
Not just when we go to heaven. Now.
Every spiritual blessing, remember? My friends, as you think and pray about these truths about you, think and pray about them regarding your spouse.
Okay, that one just kind of blew my mind. How about you, SUMites? I hope you’re beginning to see how important you are in God’s eyes and in your marriage. Nothing is impossible for Him. And you, my friends, as a co-heir of Jesus and a co-laborer with God, are part of His possibilities.
Love you dearly!
Copyright: alphaspirit / 123RF Stock Photo
I’ve hinted for months and told everyone and anyone who will listen that this year, 2017 is a year of breakthrough and healing (emotional and physical) for the Church. I’m convinced God is healing His people to prepare them for the Great Revival and the salvation of a billion souls. This statement isn’t new to any of you if you been a reader here for a number of months.
AND NOW, the LORD is revealing to me more of his plan. You are going to be in shock and awe when I share what I have to say on the development of His plan. It’s happening right now. I will share more on Friday but for today, I want to encourage you to BELIEVE for holy breakthroughs.
Our faith is increased when we share testimony. So, I’m sharing a testimony of breakthrough that I believe you can draw upon.
My breakthroughs, anything of personal spiritual value, arrive because I’ve spent time in the “secret place.” (Psalm 91:1) The holy place of intimacy, prayer, reading of the Word and time in His Presence.
See this photo? It is a sticky note that I scribbled out on October 17, 2015. Two years ago. These were the prayer requests I was seeking of the LORD and I have had them penned and stuck to the bulletin board in my prayer room for nearly two years.
Our daughter, Caitie, started college four years ago. We had managed to save some money for her tuition and she received a small partial scholarship that covered the first two years. However, I knew we would need $50,000 for her last two years. I still gulp when I consider how impossible this number sounded as I pinned it to the bulletin board. It’s the first item on the list.
I cried out in the secret place. I pleaded. I prayed. I believed. I TRUSTED!
My friends, two years passed and provision did not arrive. I ended up withdrawing money from my 401K to fund her last two years of college. (I’m thankful, I had a 401K from my years in corporate America.)
I will admit that I felt confused, disappointed a bit and uncertain about God’s silence. But….. This isn’t the end of the story. I am a hungry believer. I have faith in the God of in the impossible. I’m a believer in persistence. I continued to press in to learn more about my King and His ways. Can I just tell you that God shows up even when we give up?
Caitie will graduated from BIOLA, a Christian University, on May 26th of this year. Certain doors opened which were providential and she decided to apply to Grad School. Her Dad and I, had no idea how she would get there and were utterly at a loss how we would pay for it.
Back to the secret place… I prayed. I also spent some time studying the Courts of Heaven, and one morning I entered those courts and made a petition to the Judge. (That experience I will share in a later teaching.)
Upon completing my prayer time, two utterly astonishing things happened THAT DAY with regard to our finances. But what I want to share with you today, happened a few weeks later.
The phone rings, I answer.
“Mom, I received a letter today from Purdue University.”
“Mom, they are offering me a full ride.” I’m dumbfounded. Unable to speak. And that is a rarity for me.
“Mom, they also want me to become a teacher and teach the under-grad courses and will pay me. It will be enough to cover all my living expenses.”
I utter with astonishment swirling around me, “Wow, Caitie…. Just Wow… Praise Jesus!”
My friends, God heard my prayer back in 2015. His plan was to provide ALL of the finances. When you consider the financial benefit that Purdue offered her, it roughly totals $100,000. That is double what I had prayed for. And a side note, the money I withdrew from my 401k has been replaced because the stock it is invested, has tripled. God answered my prayer and gave us double!!! Say what??????
If God will do this for me… He will do it for you…. Go into your secret place. Meditate on His promises. Pray them back to Him. Write them down. Tarry, pray, storm the heavens and don’t relent. Sometimes God’s answers are bigger than we can dream and often they arrive in ways we aren’t expecting or in a timing we are not anticipating.
I do want to share my experience in the Courts of Heaven because that precipitate my breakthrough. I’m thinking of doing a live class to explain it.
SUMites, we have been called by God, as critical participants in this next GREAT REVIVAL. This week God began to reveal what this is going to look like. I will be sharing about that on Friday.
Today, I am walking in the truth of Acts 2. And I declare that you are walking in His Spirit with me.
So right now, today, make your state of commitment to God’s plan in the comments. Write what you are praying for in the comments. Write out your hunger to experience the Acts 2 church. Write out your desire to be used by God to be the harvesters in this next Great Revival. Cry out for a revelation of His love.
I’m on fire!!!!!!!…. I will pray with you in the comments. I love you, my people… My church without walls, my SUM nation…. MY FRIENDS. MY DEAR, BELOVED, ETERNAL FRIENDS. I love you. Hugs, Lynn
He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.” —Mark 5:34 (NIV)
Let’s conclude this portion of our Emotional Healing study with a prayer for marriage. Several months ago, I was on the prayer team as we walked a woman through emotional healing from infidelity in her marriage. As I listened to our team leader gently lead this woman through an amazing healing prayer, I scribbled down the prayer and knew it was from the Holy Spirit.
SUMites, marriage is challenging in different seasons. I consider how damaged I was when I went into my marriage 25 years ago. Two immature, naïve, and broken people throw their lives together, add in children and then try to unwind our differences, our past and move into a future together. It’s hard. And it’s glorious at the same time.
How I wish I knew back then what I know now about my faith, myself and how to become free. But I’m learning and I’m compelled by God to share. That has been my direction and destiny since 2006 when this blog was born.
So today, I’m sharing a simple prayer for marriage. I’m going to speak it as if I’m praying it about my husband. Adapt for your marriage. Allow the Holy Spirit, Jesus and our Father, heal you and set your marriage on a path to GLORY!!!
Go into your quiet time with a journal, ask the Lord to bring His glory. For Jesus and the Holy Spirit to come just like I shared with you in my last post. Then pray something like this:
Jesus, I forgive my husband (wife). I forgive him because at times, he has made it unsafe to love him. (This is where you would tell the Lord about hurts or sins where you were made to feel unsafe or hurt.)
Jesus, I surrender the old muddy lenses I’ve used to see my husband. (Visualize yourself handing them over.)
Give me new lenses to see my husband exactly as You see him.
Lord, what is the truth about my husband? (Pause and listen then let the Holy Spirit speak into your heart. Write down what you hear. Linger here and let the Lord impress upon you the words about your spouse.)
Jesus, my husband is worthy of love. He is worthy of respect. (Listen and allow these statements to take root in your heart.)
Jesus, what is your favorite thing about my husband? (Listen)
Jesus, what do you want to do through my husband?
Jesus, what do you want me to do regarding my husband?
Jesus, show me how you are protecting me as I love my husband.
Jesus, is there anything You want me to know about my husband and our marriage?
Move through these questions in prayer and allow the Lord to show you facets of your life, marriage, and spouse you may not know or understand.
Recently, I experienced a revelation about my husband. It was life-changing and I will be writing about that in the next series, A Revelation of Love.
I love you SUMites. Someone, I hope many someones, in our community found their way to healing. The emotional healing prayer has become a regular “go-to” for me in recent months. I will pray this when I feel a hurt, a rejection, a wounding from a misplaced word from friends, family or my spouse. It’s a powerful tool to remain sanctified and in the Presence of God.
I love you SUMites. Pray with expectation because our prayers are accelerated in this season. Hugs. Lynn
SUMites, 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!
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.
My friends, I have a fascinating story to tell you today. I shared in the past that God is changing things up a bit in how He speaks to me. Let me tell you this is both a bit frustrating and very exciting, but I absolutely love this adventure with Him. And I love His unexpected ways.
Well, He did something very unexpected just recently and right in my own kitchen. A few weeks ago I was standing at the counter, spreading refried beans on corn chips to make nachos. Yuuum!
Hubby was still in his office working. I sang along with worship music as I worked. Let me just say I am so glad I held a butter knife instead of a sharp blade.
The Holy Spirit showed up big time. I was so overcome by His presence that I had to drop the corn chip and knife on the counter. I couldn’t do anything else except stand there and soak Him in!
My friends, I’ve had encounters with God’s presence in my quiet time and at church. But this was so unexpected, sudden and overwhelming. It was like the Holy Spirit wanted me to understand that His showing up wasn’t dependent upon my efforts to make it happen. That is something Abba continues to work out in me and let go of as it’s a form of striving.
So there I stood, hands out and tears running down my cheeks as I worshiped. God’s presence usually brings me to tears, because His love is so overwhelming. I knew hubby was in the house somewhere, which normally would have caused concern about what he might see and interpret, but as the thought crossed my mind I simply pushed it away. I didn’t care. I could do nothing but stand there and worship.
And then it happened. My husband walked in. Yet I remained in my worshipful state and noticed he just walked on by. Didn’t say a word.
Once the moment passed and I opened my eyes, Mike came back into the kitchen. He looked at me with concern, and asked, “Are you okay?”
As I wiped away my tears, I said, “Yes, I’m great actually. Just having a God moment.”
“Okay…He’s not being mean to you, is He?”
“No, sweetie. He’s just loving on me.”
Then he nodded and walked away. My friends, this is actually the second time my husband has expressed that concern, and it’s given me insight to understand that the God he was taught about at the private Christian school he attended as a teenager was not the loving and true God we know and love. And that breaks my heart.
Yet I rejoice in this encounter and what I learned! God is so good. I’m so excited to share this with you, because I believe it will give you insight and possibly even breakthrough in your prayers for your spouse.
SUMites, I wonder how many of our spouses are truly operating from that place of disconnect. As God showed me this, my heart swelled with even more love and understanding for my husband. And heartache too, because I can almost see with my spiritual eyes that moment he chose this path.
So, my friends, I am praying against this tarnished mindset of Who God is that’s causing him to reject the image of a cruel god instead of knowing the One True and Loving God Almighty. I am praying for his spiritual eyes to be opened to the truth of Who God really is and to encounter the love of God all around him. That includes me too, that God’s love would pour through me even more.
I believe God is working in amazing ways in our loved ones that we can’t even perceive yet. He’s revealing the pieces to us as well. I know that can be confusing and frustrating, but I’m learning to look at these pieces and simply ask God to show me how to connect them. And He does!
And He will do this for you too. So my friends, I pray for greater wisdom to flood our entire SUM community. I pray that our own spiritual ears and eyes would be opened more and that we would have greater discernment to hear and see what the Holy Spirit is telling us right now. Because it’s really, really good stuff.
And Lord Jesus, we praise and worship with all our love. We give You and our hearts and lives freely as we walk this path of faith. Help us live each day in greater awareness and expectation of You. We love You so much! In the name of Jesus, amen!
I love you, SUMites! You are amazing!
As we conclude this study, I have an astonishing story to share with you about how our prayers can remain unanswered or answers are delayed and how what we expect is usually not what the Lord has in mind. Let me take you to a very old passage.
Joshua 6:1-5 Now the gates of Jericho were securely barred because of the Israelites. No one went out and no one came in.
Then the Lord said to Joshua, “See, I have delivered Jericho into your hands, along with its king and its fighting men. March around the city once with all the armed men. Do this for six days. Have seven priests carry trumpets of rams’ horns in front of the ark. On the seventh day, march around the city seven times, with the priests blowing the trumpets. When you hear them sound a long blast on the trumpets, have the whole army give a loud shout; then the wall of the city will collapse and the army will go up, everyone straight in.”
Don’t let the familiarity of this story steal the outrageousness of what happens here. God tells the Israelites to do something seemingly ridiculous. I’m mean absolutely absurd. Can you imagine coming against a city and instead of piling up dirt and stones to scale the walls, instead of practicing warfare and battle tactics, God instructs them to march.
And get this. On day seven march in silence.
In the reality of it all, it is stupid! At least in the eyes of men. Ahhhhh, but that is what is so cool with God. When God moves, you KNOW it’s Him.
And that is exactly the same when it comes to our prayers. We have certain expectations that God should answer our prayer in such and such a way. In all my years of praying and receiving answers from the Lord, RARELY does God answer my prayers in the ways I expect. Typically, His answers are always slow. He rarely answers the way I expect or hope or in my timeline. But, when He does move, it’s always spectacular and in ways that are so much better and bigger than I could even dream up. And I can dream up some pretty big stuff.
God may ask of us to believe and follow up on the belief with actions and faith that feels absurd at times. And in response to our faith, He is likely to answer in absolutely unexpected and miraculous provision. The story of the Walls of Jericho is a historic reference for us living today.
My friends, prayer is at the core, a conversation between two “in love” hearts. Prayer is devotion and time together. It’s a relationship of consideration, respect, honor, and peace. It’s love and friendship. It’s worship and teaching. It’s a Father and His child whom He gave so much to bring into His life forever.
I pray today that your prayer life is enriched with all the prayer strategies we have covered. I pray you see astonishing answers and that lives are changed because you prayed. I hope you bear witness to supernatural healing and that your spouse falls to his or her knees in surrender. I pray with conviction and belief that you will experience the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living and that your life is forever changed because you pray. In Jesus name.
I love you, my friends. Now go and pray…. And change the world for the cause of Christ! Hugs, Lynn
Essential components of effective prayer:
Many things can actually block prayer. Block Our Own Prayers? That’s one way our prayers become blocked. And there are several others.
Deliberate, willful and habitual sin creates a disconnect in our prayer life. In the Word, rebellion is as bad as witchcraft (1 Samuel 15:23). There is a time in our faith walk we come to a place to ask the Lord, “See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” – Psalms 139:24
Our love for our God leads us to ask this question just as David asked. We don’t ask out of guilt or condemnation. We ask because we want to know if there is anything that is keeping us from experiencing “more” of the Kingdom.
When I’m walking in faith, the Lord will often point out issues that are stealing parts of my soul away from righteousness. The Holy Spirit will clinch my heart over things in the moment. Certain television shows that used to be okay to watch. Certain friendships or relationships. There are a multitude of things the Holy Spirit is always cautioning us to listen and turn away. These moments are often a split second of decision. We can say quickly to ourselves, “Naw, it’s not that big of a deal.” Or, “I can handle this. It’s not scary or too violent or over sexed or against Biblical values.”
These moments happen every, single day. We can either follow the Holy Spirit or our flesh. When we choose the Spirit over and over, God then releases you into a higher level of love, authority and power and your prayers are moved upon with angelic forces.
My intention is not to throw you into condemnation (Romans 8:1) with this post. God’s mercy and faithful forgiveness covers our every failure. We need only ask. I’m convinced the Lord is cheering for us. He looks upon our lives and speaks with the love of a Father, “Baby girl (My son), I know how very difficult it is. I knew before I sent you to earth that you would face enormous difficulties and pain. I knew you would screw up your life. I KNOW it’s very, very hard down there. I just want you to do the best you can and to learn to love me and others. It will all be okay. Just do your best.”
My friends, rest in His love. If He’s asking you to give something up, it’s because it’s to make room in your life for more of His love and goodness, His gifts and promises. Let Him reign!!!!!!!
I love you. Lynn
Essential components of effective prayer:
Good morning prayer family! Christy Edney here!
It has been one month since we invited you to embark upon this journey of Prayer Partnerships! I expected to receive a handful of requests but God has far exceeded my wildest expectations. Today, we have over sixty women in prayer relationships! Now, I'm calling on the male members of our community. I know you're out there and this invitation is also open to you. If any of you (male or female) would like to receive a partner then please click here: Sumite Prayer Partners
Now, please join me in prayer:
Heavenly Father, thank you for these hearts that have called out for a deeper fellowship with you and each other. In the name of Jesus Christ, I bless them with authentic friendships that will achieve your purpose in each of their lives. Lord, I focus our attention on the leaders of this community, Lynn and Dineen. I ask you to assign a host of angels to fight the spiritual battles on their behalf. Cover them with love and encouragement from the most unexpected places. Please provide an abundance of time, material and motivation as they continue to work on this new book that you have placed upon their hearts. Holy Spirit, fill this community with your presence and reinvent us in your image. Thank you for being more than my human words can express. I pray these things in the name of our High Priest, Jesus Christ, amen!
Are you new to walking this unequally yoked journey? Did you search the Internet and stumble upon our website? Every week new readers arrive here looking for help. They are seeking suggestions, wisdom and practical instruction on how to deal with tithing, raising kids in faith, standing strong in their marriage when they feel fragmented because of differing faith beliefs.
You may be puzzled as to why Dineen and I write and share instruction about growing in our faith. You may wonder why I’ve spent a month talking about prayer when you need to know if you should ask your husband about giving to church. Well, my friends, Dineen and I have walked this unequally yoked road for 25+ years. And out of our year in and year out experience we have learned a foundational truth about thriving in an unequally yoked marriage.
Are you ready? This is it: When we grow in our faith life our earthly life becomes easier. Life with our spouse becomes more peaceful. Living on planet earth in powerful faith makes the difference in every positive and hopeful way in all aspects of relationships and living.
That is why I’m spending so much time in developing our prayer lives. When we pray with the prayer strategies I’ve covered, you bring heaven into your home, marriage and life. (You can search the archives for practical advice on all issues related to being unequally yoked. I’m pretty sure we have written about all of them multiple times. *grin*.)
We have covered many aspects of creating a powerful prayer life. But today I want to chat about what we do with our confusion and disappointment when our prayers remain unanswered. And specifically, why isn’t my spouse saved?
Gang, as I mentioned my husband and I have been together for more than 25 years. I have prayed, pleaded, bargained, begged and everything and anything else to convince God to save my husband. And save him yesterday, already.
Anyone else in this place with me???? Anyone????
Well, there are a few things to bring before the Lord when you are praying and not receiving an answer. We first must ask, “Am I praying within the will of God?”
This is an easy question and one that is also difficult. When it comes to God’s will to save our spouse, the Word is clear. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. -2 Peter 3:9 (NIV)
So, you gotta wonder, if I’m praying with sincerity with a heart full of love and hope, and within the Will of my Father, WHY IN THE WORLD ISN’T THIS MAN SAVED?
Yep, I know I’m not alone in asking this question.
Here are my thoughts. I believe the Word and that I AM praying in faith and conviction using my will. Thus God sends me to this statement in His Word:
The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” -Acts 16:29-31 (NIV)
My friends, I believe that my husband will be saved. My husband has already been sanctified (made holy) because of my faith in Jesus. If you read our book, Winning Him Without Words, you will remember my story of my husband praying the prayer of salvation with Joe on our driveway.
So…… It has been accomplished. I will live believing that God will honor His Word and that my husband will find his way to heaven. However, right now my reality is that my husband is not living for Jesus.
I’m bummed out about it all. My husband is missing so much that God has for his life. So much blessing, wonder, adventure and peace. Our marriage has missed out on many things that I truly have wanted to share but didn’t because of our faith differences. These are sacrifices I have laid down on the altar of love for my Savior.
I know that like me, you are also laying down many of your hopes about your marriage on the altar. But, I will be the voice to tell you that all we have laid down, God will pour back into our lives in other ways. Now and into eternity.
What is difficult for us is that God’s timing is not our timing. God’s ways are not our ways (Isaiah 55:8-9). And we have such great difficulty surrendering our expectations and timelines. Sometimes I think the best prayer we can pray for our spouse’s salvation is this:
Lord, have your way with me. I surrender all my expectations and limitations. Fill me with your wisdom and revelation. Place contentment within my spirit and supernatural love in my heart. Let me turn my eyes fully to you and believe without doubt, you have my utmost best and greatest plans and intentions for my life, family and marriage. I trust you and will live intentionally to draw near to Thee. In Jesus name. AMEN
Today, let’s become “lay-down lovers of Jesus.” Let’s turn our face fully toward Him and allow His love to fill our hearts and trust Him to fulfill His Word toward our spouse and children.
In the comments, write your spouse’s name, children’s name and follow it by 1 Corinthians 7:14 & Acts 16:29 as a statement of faith. I’ll start us out.
Mike, Caitie, Brad and granddaughters – 1 Corinthians 7:14 & Acts 16:29. They are sanctified and saved. It is written. I believe. It is done. In Jesus name. AMEN
I love you my friends. I’m praying for your family in the comments. In His Grace, Lynn
Next posts: The blocks of prayer.
Essential components of effective prayer:
Worship and Thanksgiving.
My friends, sometimes our prayers can turn into a laundry list. We pray on and on with names and needs that are truly important but we can become restlessly caught up in our pain, need and daily life that it's possible to slip into a place of prayer where we lose our perspective. SUMites, it’s imperative that our primary focus in prayer is to remain fully aware that we are having a love conversation with our Father, with our Bridegroom-Prince, Jesus.
The Lord truly knows our needs and yes, I believe we must pray and speak our concerns to His heart. But can you just take a minute here and imagine our Papa God, waiting, hoping even longing for us to approach the Throne of Grace and just hang out? To listen to Him? To ask Him what He's doing on earth? What thrills His heart? What makes Him smile?
My friends, let’s turn our affection toward our Lord and our Father. Let’s take time to be intentional about worship and thanksgiving. In my prayer time, I try to begin with what I call my “Three thankfuls”. I write down in my prayer journal: 3 thankfuls: Followed by three things that come to my mind and simply acknowledge that everything good in my life is from my Papa.
I once heard a pastor teaching on this aspect of intimacy in prayer. He said that he rarely brings a list before the Lord but brings his affection. He said something like this, “God already knows my heart and my needs. So I am intentional to bring my affection to Him. And He usually moves on my heart requests.”
I believe there is a time to petition and there is also time to just be (Psalm 46:10)! It’s wisdom and discernment fueled by relationship that takes us perfectly into each.
So this week I have a challenge for you, when you lay down to go to sleep, rest quietly and turn your affection toward the Lord. In your imagination or quiet prayers, give Him your heart and then let Him love on you.
Today in the comments, share with me your three thankfuls for today:
I love you my friends. You LOVE well. You love God and you love people. Well done good and faithful servant!!!!!!!!!!!!! See you in the comments. Hugs. Lynn
Essential components of effective prayer:
If you don’t read any other post on prayer in this series, PLEASE READ THIS ONE.
My friends, there are many more aspects of prayer that we could cover. We won’t get to them all in this series but I have covered what I sense the Holy Spirit is wanting to impart to the church in this season about powerful prayer.
Today, I want to speak to one more area that is very specific to those of us who are unequally yoked. And next week we will cover the “blocks” to prayer and what to do with unanswered prayers.
About a year ago I was doing some study about defeating the demonic. Because I’m married to a pre-believer and so are you, the spiritual warfare in which we engage is right in our own homes and it can be relentless. So, I began studying as many things as possible about how to have victory in my prayers and in spiritual warfare just so I could maintain peace in my home and so my home would be a place where the Holy Spirit lives and not the demons. Anyone want that as well?
Okay, so I learned a lot. But one of the most powerful things I learned was specific to those of us married to unbelievers. First let me state that the spiritual realm is governed by laws. These are spiritual principals and regulations that were instituted by God. Just as in the natural, there is the law of gravity, there are laws the angelic and demonic must abide by and these laws are meticulously followed. The demonic relentlessly search for ways to gain access into our lives through laws that have been violated. A violation occurs when we believe a lie about God or about who we are in Christ. The devils can gain access.
So, why am I giving you a lesson in spiritual laws today. Because we must understand how authority works. There is a structure to authority in the spiritual realm. God has ultimate authority, in the Bible teaches us that God has given all authority to Christ. We, as joint heirs with Christ, receive authority in some manner or degree. We access that authority through our prayers. All this to say: The structure of the family is a system of authority. It says in the Word that the husband has authority over his wife (Ephesians 5:23). And thus, parents have authority over their children.
Why does this matter. Because men who are Christians can pray for protections over their wife and children and the demonic realm MUST listen. But in our mismatched marriages, our spouse is not under the authority of Christ so we could be left vulnerable. But….. we are not.
This is the secret the demonic does not want you to know. We are empowered in a special way to pray protection, favor, blessing and much more over our unbelieving spouse through, 1 Corinthians 7:14.
THIS IS OUR VERSE OF POWER AND AUTHORITY.
And let me tell you I use this passage often. And I see results.
For the unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife has been sanctified through her believing husband. Otherwise your children would be unclean, but as it is, they are holy. – 1 Corinthians 7:14 (NIV)
My friends, this is our authority to pray away things that are not of God in our spouse’s life and over our children. The rules of familial authority in this passage apply to the spiritual realm. I don’t know how to explain this well other than to just pray and show you how I use this passage in my prayers for my home and family.
Often, almost daily, I will pray something like this:
In the name of Jesus, I take authority over my home through the power of the Word of God in 1 Corinthians 7:14. I stand in faith over my home and it is now holy as stated in this verse. My husband is now covered with the holiness of Christ and covered by His blood. My children are holy and they will walk in glorious plans and purposes designed for them since before time began and declared by God. They, my children and husband and myself, will experience the abundance of the Lord today in our schools, ministry, workplace and anywhere else we go.
I say that any unclean spirit that is in my house MUST go right now into the pit. (I will name any here as the Holy Spirit leads me. The demonic gains access to my home at times through the television my husband watches at night.) Lord, in Jesus name and by the authority as the believing spouse, I command all demonic spirits, fear, pride, unbelief, political spirit, religious spirit, etc to leave right now. I state clearly that they cannot come back nor can replacement spirits come in. I bless my husband to receive the love of God through me and all darkness is forbidden to be in my home. In Jesus name.
Father, I take authority over my children through 1 Corinthians 7:14 as their mother. I say they are blessed and will receive today, every spiritual gift you have prepared for them. They will experience Your joy, peace and goodness (Romans 14:17) as this is Your loving and lavish provision for them. And Lord as I speak this blessing over them, I claim it for myself and my husband. In Jesus name.
Thank you Lord for the angels that you have stationed around and in my house. I stand with them - in your power and authority through Jesus as the protector and guard against evil. I declare today my family and home is a safe zone and nothing unclean can enter in. I declare today that blessings and peace and grace rest here in the power of the Holy Spirit and Jesus Christ. I stand with my armor fully on and in faith under the truth of 1 Corinthians 7:14. In the powerful name of Jesus Christ my Lord. AMEN… Hallelujah!!!
Okay, do you all need some authority in your home? Well now you have it. Say this prayer out loud and give me an amen in the comments. Let’s release the Kingdom of God into your family line and sanctify hour home, spouse and children. AMEN…
We love you Jesus. Thank you.
BIG hugs, Lynn
Essential components of effective prayer:
(You know what is so weird. Every time I try to re-post this list, something doesn't come through when I paste it into the composer. Today is was number four -confidence. And half way through my prayer as I was typing it out, half of it disappeared.---DEVIL YOU DO NOT WIN. JESUS WINS ALWAYS. So there.)