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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. We 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?
Hello SUM Family, Tiffany here!
I shared with you at the conference that God has been speaking to me about cedars. I 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.
4 Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 5 Love the Lordyour God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6 These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 7 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. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.
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?
Hope you are off to a brilliant summer.
This morning in my Daily Bible reading I came across the following passage and God began to talk. Want to know what He said? It’s really good.
1Now King Solomon loved many foreign women. Besides Pharaoh’s daughter, he married women from Moab, Ammon, Edom, Sidon, and from among the Hittites. 2 The Lord had clearly instructed the people of Israel, “You must not marry them, because they will turn your hearts to their gods.” Yet Solomon insisted on loving them anyway. 3 He had 700 wives of royal birth and 300 concubines. And in fact, they did turn his heart away from the Lord. ─ 1 Kings 11:1-3
The Lord spoke immediately upon reading these verses, “Lynn, the wisest man in the world, the wisest of all humanity that has ever lived, was drawn away from Me by the influence of his evil wives. How much greater is the influence of a Godly wife on an unbelieving spouse.”
“You (wives of unbelievers) underestimate the influence you carry. You allow the lies of the deceiver to hold sway over the truth that Christian wives are utterly equipped and able to influence their husbands into faith in Jesus Christ. This is truth. Live it!”
My thoughts: KEEP TALKING GOD! YOU ARE AMAZING AND WE LOVE YOU!
We are over a month post conference and boy…not only is God doing a work in me, but doing a work in my husband! Hallelujah and amen.
I’m excited that God is opening doors of spiritual discussions between my husband I, and I’m thrilled to see where these discussions will lead. God will pave a way for my husband’s salvation, yes, but like many other women in this community realize…it comes at a price. The price of truly getting to know myself through the Savior first.
Sometimes, I have to be careful about what I ask. When I prayed, “God give me your heart and show me your ways.” You had better believe He will show you…and sometimes, it stings.
Recently, it occurred to me during in a conversation with my close sisters in Christ, that I may be too “self-righteous,” too “passionate,” and I may come on “too strong” when I talk about Jesus. The Bible encourages us to walk in holiness and righteousness, but was I really being self-righteousness? Was my righteousness the way to go?
Some thesaurus synonyms of self-righteous includes: holier-than-thou, self-satisfied, smug, priggish, pious, moralizing, preachy, superior, and hypocritical. It’s basically the opposite of humility. It’s the opposite of Jesus and what He came to earth to fight against. Those characteristics screamed of everything the religious “Pharisees” stood for in my head.
I didn’t know this about myself until now. I was having a hard time balancing my passion and spreading the gospel in a loving way. God wasn’t telling me to stop spreading the gospel, but in my pursuit to tell others of my Bible knowledge, I was pushing them away from Jesus ,rather than drawing them in.
Bible knowledge is great, but what good is knowledge if you’re not representing the true love of Christ?
I felt like I failed Him. I failed God and others by not reflecting the love of Christ.
I dug deep and asked my Father, Why am I like this? Where is it coming from?
God answered. The root of it was simple. I had this inner desire to be heard. Growing up in my household, I was rarely heard. The type of relationship I had with my parents was more like a dictatorship. “Do as you’re told…or else.”
I remember memories of me begging them to “hear me out.” I was constantly trying to “convince,” them why they ought to trust me with friendships at school or joining school sports. My opinions or what I had to say were not valued. It was “my way or the highway,” or “because I said so.” I intellectually fought them because I felt like it was the only way that would lead me to freedom outside of my home.
My family prided themselves on being right. And I honestly, I don’t care if you’re right or wrong…I just want to feel loved. To feel protected, honored, valuable...to be heard. Isn’t that why we all love Jesus? Because he provides all those things other people may not be able to?
I was intellectually convincing people why the Bible was the source of truth. When God’s only commandment to me is 1) Love God first. 2) Love your neighbor as yourself. I had to put myself in my neighbor’s shoes and ask, “Would I want to know more about Jesus hearing what I heard from myself?” The answer was no, probably not.
God forgives and He honors our mistakes. But really, I felt like one of those people standing with a sign at a public venue that says, “Believe in Jesus or you will go to hell!” You know what I mean.
In all thankfulness, I have people in my life who can hold me accountable. In God’s perfect timing, He also starts to open more spiritual discussions with my husband. If it weren’t for sisters in Christ, I probably would have vomited Bible knowledge to people who didn’t even care! They just need Jesus!
Jeremiah 9:23 says “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom…”
My most important question to Jesus was, “Other than prayer, how do I go about spreading your gospel now?” I’ve been confirmed in this season it is time my husband hears about the Lord. I’ve been “winning” him through my actions and now it’s through my voice.
The answer was simple. Testify.
Testify what God has done in your life.
Testify the goodness of God.
Testify how he healed you.
Testify the miracles you have witnessed because of Him.
Testify. Luke 8:39 says:
“’Return to your home, and declare how much God has done for you.’ And he went away, proclaiming through the whole city how much Jesus has done for him.”
I love you all and I’m thankful for a community like you who understands the growing pains of being more Christ-like. Thank you all for your words of wisdom and prayer.
I will see you in the comments!
Several days ago, I received a phone call from a woman who lives in Wisconsin ( I live in California). She had heard about our book and took time to call me. She shared that she has lived with her unbelieving spouse now for 33 years. Wow, thirty-three years. She loves him and in the past, fought many spiritual battles and persevered with Christ. She went on to tell me that her strength to walk this road came from a scripture verse she heard as a young woman.
Proverbs 16:7 When a man’s (woman’s) ways are pleasing to the LORD, he makes even his enemies live at peace with him (her).
She told me that she believed this and this verse has proven true throughout her life. “Think about it Lynn. My husband doesn’t believe in God. He is an enemy of God.”
I reply, “Wow, I hadn’t really thought of it that way.”
She responds, “He is an enemy of God out of ignorance. But I have lived my life the best that I can to be a woman, pleasing to God. And just as His word proves, God has brought peace even within my marriage where my spouse remains an unbeliever. It has been God’s promise to me all these years and I believe Him.”
I thanked her for imparting this scripture verse to me and the promise it holds for all of us living unequally yoked.
Now I don’t believe my spouse is my enemy because I KNOW who the enemy really is. But, I also see how, as we wait for our unsaved spouse to discover the truths of Christ, we can trust God to bring peace into our lives, homes, and marriages. We need only take delight in the Lord and live for Him.
Psalm 37:4 Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Be blessed, Lynn
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.
As millions of us take time to give thanks to the Lord this week, I thought it would be so cool to share a scripture verse. Share a verse that you are thankful for and how the verse impacted your life.
Who knows, perhaps your verse will help someone else.
So this thanksgiving I'm thankful for:
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. — 2 Timothy 1:7
I can’t count the number of times as a young mom, something would scare me in the middle of the night. I would sit upright and speak this verse out-loud over and over until fear left!
I’m so thankful for the powerful Word of the Lord. SHARE YOUR VERSE IN THE COMMENTS!
Happy Thanksgiving. I love you, SUMite Family! Be Blessed, Lynn
Rise up and receive the gift of God, The Eagle. God is surrounded by eagles in His throne room. Let’s take note of what they offer.
Their faces looked like this: Each of the four had the face of a human being, and on the right side each had the face of a lion, and on the left the face of an ox; each also had the face of an eagle. — Ezekiel 1:10
But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. — Isaiah 40: 31
Eagles soar for two reasons: To climb above a Thunderhead and to hunt or protect their nestlings.
They have been discovered soaring at rare altitudes of 32-37 feet. These are the altitude of jetliners. They engage and lock a specific joint in the wing, making it immovable. By circling upon the temperature differentials, they climb to such extreme heights that frost begins to cover their back and wings. They exude tiny amounts of energy, the lungs constrict thereby maintaining oxygen requirements.
They mount up the windshafts toward the brilliance of the sun. A tiny sliver in their eye shields the eye from damage, yet guides the eagle upward, fully focused on the light. Perhaps for the sheer adventure and likely for the posturing, a perspective upon all below.
Similarly, as believers, when we mount up over the circumstances of life, through a relentless focus on Jesus, our bright point, we become untouchable like eagles, because we abide in the light of intimacy of God’s Presence. Engaging the Presence with pinpoint focus we mount up and soar over every challenge. We are meant to have dominion over the circumstances of life. The Eagle represents this Kingdom principal. We engage the face of the Eagle and emulate our Father.
Eagles also soar to hunt and protect.
Were you aware that an eagle can spot a snake from more than a mile above? Eagles circle and soar, patiently watching their pray until they spot a moment of vulnerability.
Then at speeds up to nearly 100 miles per hour they steak out of the sky. Their wings and neck lock into a folded position, their feet fold back, they go completely silent, stealth. Like a missile with a laser-focused eye, an eagle descends from the light source. The high perspective above the chose, fear, scrambling, and distraction, fully committed and focused on the snake.
Upon the moment the snake realizes it’s too late, it momentarily freezes in place in a terror. A fully committed hooked-beak form of unstoppable victory is screaming toward it at an inescapable rate.
This is our perspective. Upon our departure from the Presence of God, we appear to the demonic world as a ferocious eagle in full assault. The demons scream and scramble away when we approach.
Because they know someone is going to die!
Every demonic spirit is petrified of who you are and what you carry.
Today, what are your circumstances? Illness, divorce, wayward children, loss of job, loss of hope? Rise up Child of the Most High. You are equipped with wings like eagles. Pursue the brightness of Jesus and then come back down with laser-focus and talons extended to grab those pesky demons by the neck….. As someone is going to die and it isn’t you or your family.
You carry the perspective of God. You are endued with power from On High. Filled with the Holy Spirit and rockin’ a prayer life that causes the demons to scream as they die. Descend from the Throne of Grace and let them have it. Speak life over your circumstances. Speak truth and peace. Speak to the darkness to die. In Jesus name.
Beloved, stand strong in His Word and know that Jesus has your back. I love you. Have a great week. Lynn
Hey SUM Family,
a : an outward sign : indicationb : something that furnishes proof : testimony; specifically : something legally submitted to a tribunal to ascertain the truth of a matter(Merriam-Webster online dictionary)
Last post (This Is Just The Pits!) we began to take a look at the life of Joseph. We discovered that there are ten tests we must face in order to fulfill our God-given purpose (I highly suggest you read From Dream to Destiny by Robert Morris for more on this topic). I want us to really dive into the deep end of the pool as we learn more about the pit test.
First, let's continue on in the story of Joseph. At this point he was ambushed by his brothers and thrown into the pit. Changing scenes, we see what happens with his family next:
So [Joseph's brothers] took Joseph's tunic, killed a kid of the goats, and dipped the tunic in blood. Then they sent the tunic of many colors, and they brought it to their father and said, "We have found this. Do you know whether it is your son's tunic or not?" And he recognized it and said, "It is my son's tunic. A wild beast has devoured him. Without doubt Joseph is torn to pieces" (Genesis 37:31-33).
Joseph's brothers did not flat out lie and say that Joseph was killed. Jacob came to that conclusion because of their leading question, "Do you know whether it is your son's tunic or not?" This is what we would call fabricated (false) evidence. Remember evidence is an indication or something that furnishes proof. This evidence in Jacob's mind was proof that his favorite son was dead - to him it was the truth.
For over 20 years, imagine Jacob as he says in v. 35, "For I shall go down into the grave to my son in mourning." Imagine a father so heartbroken that he was not able to be consoled. I don't know for certain but I can imagine countless nights of crying himself to sleep, restlessness, no appetite, deep depression...unable to move on. Not only that but his other sons could have easily freed him from all of it...over 20 years of seeing and living with their father. What callous and prideful hearts!
What about you? What fabricated evidence has been stacked up against you? Your marriage? Your parenting? Your identity in Christ? What lies of the pit have kept you trapped for far too long?
We live in a sin-hardened world, and we will be tempted by fabricated evidence just as Jacob was. And like Jacob, we will suffer unnecessary grief if we allow the lies of the pit to determine what we believe.
This is very important. If you want to get out of the pit, you must learn to discern the lies of the enemy. Because when you are in the pit, you are especially vulnerable. When you are in the pit, circumstances usually don't look very favorable - and that is exactly when Satan will manipulate those circumstances in order to deceive you. He will hold up those circumstances before you as evidence that you should believe him rather than have faith in God. But fabricated evidence is not the truth. Joseph's brothers held up a bloody coat as evidence, and that evidence looked pretty convincing. But it was fabricated evidence. It was not the truth. If you want to overcome the lies of the pit, you must learn to focus on what God has said. When you are in the pit, you must remember that nothing is too hard for God, no matter what evidence the enemy might produce...
Yet even worse than his fabricated evidence is Satan's biggest lie: "You've messed up too badly. It's too late for you. You've messed up too badly to ever fulfill God's destiny for your life." Do you realize that the Bible is a book entirely about restoration? The Bible is filled with stories of people who messed up so badly that it seemed even God couldn't do anything about it - and yet He restored every one of them. He wants you to know that nothing is impossible for Him. As long as you have breath, it is never too late to call out to God. It doesn't matter what pit you are in. If you call out to God, He can fix it. And that is the real purpose of the pit. (pp. 38-39, From Dream to Destiny, Robert Morris)
Next time I want to finish up with the hope we have - the light at the end of the tunnel - in times of experiencing the pit test. But for now, let's meet in the comments. Let me speak truth into you and pray with you as we debunk the lies of the pit. Lean into this reality that fabricated evidence, no matter how convincing or real it appears, is NOT the truth. I promise you that this assurance will transform your life and catapult you out of the pit.
You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ, for he forgave all our sins. He canceled the record of charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross. In this way, he disarmed the spiritual rulers and authorities. He shamed them publicly by his victory over them on the cross.
-- Colossians 2:13-15 (NLT)
It is very easy to see the heaviness and struggle going on in the world. Just in our own community there is a weight of illness, backsliding (in ourselves or our spouses), addictions, anger, depression, anxiety, spiritual attacks to our identity, self-worth, motivation, and will to keep going in the faith. There is bitterness and envy, there is confusion and doubt - toward others and even God Himself. It's like we have lost sight of who we REALLY are (we'll talk more about this later).
Before I continue, I want to preface that I don't believe that our SUM community is in this bad of shape. I don't believe that we are all struggling at all times. I do however, see a trend of these things happening in the ranks...and it seems to be increasing. I myself have been struggling a lot lately. I feel as though I have opened the door to anger and fits of rage again and it is running rampant and tearing apart my family as I unleash it's fury over my husband and children. I know I am not a monster and YET...that is what the evidence has been showing me lately (tune in next time to learn more about evidence - it's life changing!).
This is where the grace of God comes in. Where the Spirit of the Lord is - there is what? FREEDOM!
In these next couple of posts, I want to share some things that I have been learning recently in God's classroom and I pray that as we work through these things together, we will gain ground in our faith and also in victory over struggles.
I have been reading From Dream to Destiny by Robert Morris (you can find the book here). In this book he walks us through the life of Joseph and explains that there are ten different tests that we must go through in order to fulfill the purposes that God has on your life. Reading this book has been so insightful. I have been able to look at the life of Joseph in such a different way. The test I want to touch on is the Pit Test (chapter 2). Let's check in on Joseph:
So Joseph went after his brothers and found them in Dothan. Now when they saw him afar off, even before he came near them, they conspired against him to kill him. Then they said to one another, "Look, this dreamer is coming! Come therefore, let us now kill him and cast him into some pit; and we shall say, ' Some wild beast has devoured him.' We shall see what will become of his dreams!" But Reuben heard it, and he delivered him out of their hands, and said, "Let us not kill him." And Reuben said to them, "Shed no blood, but cast him into this pit which is in the wilderness, and do not lay a hand on him" - that he might deliver him out of their hands, and bring him back to his father. So it came to pass, when Joseph had come to his brothers, that they stripped Joseph of his tunic, the tunic of many colors that was on him. Then they took him and cast him into a pit. And the pit was empty; there was no water in it (Gen. 37:17-24).
As we just saw, his brothers conspired to kill him. In verses 4 and 8 of Genesis 37 we find out that his brothers all hate Joseph because he was Jacob's favorite. It made matters worse when Joseph so shamelessly shared the dreams that he had of being bowed down to by his brothers and his parents. Morris goes into more detail throughout the previous chapter (chapter 1) of his book but essentially Joseph's pride is what mainly caused this rift in his family. Out of his pride he helped fuel the events that led him to this pit moment.
So what about us? What is the pit test? How do we end up in the pit?
Like it or not, all of us will go through some times when we feel as if things are just the pits. We may not be sure just how we got into that pit - and even less sure as to how to get ourselves out. But one thing is certain - we won't move ahead into our destiny unless we get out of that pit...Jesus knew we would have trouble because He know we would be living in a world contaminated by the effects of sin. As a consequence of sin, this world is full of trouble - and pits are just one form of it. Pits are simply a by-product of a fallen world. (From Dream to Destiny, p.29, 31)
Next time I want to talk about the mind blowing truth I gleaned from this book about our time in the pit and how Satan schemes to keep us there. Until then, I can't wait to see you in the comments. What kind of pit are you in right now? How can we pray for you as a family to raise you up out of it?
But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. - 1 Corinth. 15:57
I am, Because of Who He is….
Because of Jesus, I have a family. We, have a family.
Then Jesus’ mother and brothers came to see him. They stood outside and sent word for him to come out and talk with them. There was a crowd sitting around Jesus, and someone said, “Your mother and your brothers are outside asking for you.”
Jesus replied, “Who is my mother? Who are my brothers?” Then he looked at those around him and said, “Look, these are my mother and brothers. Anyone who does God’s will is my brother and sister and mother.” — Mark 3:31-35 (NLT)
Do you know what He did? He looked the faces of those seated in a circle around Him and said, “Here are my brothers. These around me, these men, are My mother. These women, my brothers.”
I have been quietly bothered by this passage for years.
To me, maybe because I’m a mom, I felt as though Jesus in this story cared more about his followers than His own mother. After all, Mary, arrived wanting to see her first-born son and brought all of Jesus’ family because they were worried. They loved Him and heard so much about Him that they traveled by foot to find Him and see to the truth of the many varying and disturbing reports. (Which I don’t think Mary believed.)
This morning the Holy Spirit stepped into my prayer room and said, “Lynn, this isn’t what is happening here.”
Wholly Guacamole, Batman! Can I say that on a Christian blog? *grin*
Jesus is teaching those surrounding Him, a Kingdom principle.
While reading this passage today, I felt as though I joined the disciples upon the floor, criss-cross apple sauce, and became part of the scene. I could “feel” the sense of awe in the room. I could see the twinkling in the eyes of Jesus as His gaze lifted then simply left the room as He stared off into the distance. You could perceive that He was peering into another realm and locking eyes with the Father. His words became more than sound. There was awareness, revelation, which filled the room and rested upon those listening with power and fire. The movement of something undefinable but wholly real and discernible.
Jesus was engaged in another realm and He was viewing those around Him in the truest reality, not what we read in the Word. Well, yes what we read, there were those waiting at the door and people on the floor but what Jesus was beholding was an eternal reality.
Jesus is seeing in the Spirit Realm. He is viewing years into the future where we are ALL -brothers and sisters. He is beholding the truest thing about that moment.
The truest thing about us.
We, who are living on this earth, seated at His feet, are brothers and sisters. Furthermore, Jesus is also our brother. Now get this, even His earthly mother will become His sister and Bride. Ya, let that blow up your mind.
Everything about Jesus and His life on earth points toward the Father, our Father. And Jesus in this moment of time is perceiving Kingdom reality and truth. In this singular moment He is also revealing a deception and a disguised mindset. Our earthly view isn’t our truth.
Jesus is glancing about that room and love is emanating forth from His being because He has glimpsed the future where these who surround Him are glorified and standing in their rightful place as His brother, His sister. He already views them, perfected. Clothed in righteousness, a cherished family member for whom He would willingly die to protect, and a son or daughter of Abba, Father.
I wonder….. I just wonder. What would happen if we could understand this reality right now. How would we view others? Our spouse? Can we perceive that our spouse is also a son or daughter but living in the prodigal nation? Lost, separated from truth and reality, held in demonic deception and fear.
Would we love them differently? Would we answer the door and welcome them without judgement or condemnation? Without trying to control, manipulate or change them. Can we glimpse the future and see them redeemed, clothed in glory? Wouldn’t we instantly forgive everything in the past?
Would our approach spin faith differently in his or her eyes today?
I want to ponder this further and ask Jesus to help me see my husband redeemed and clothed in white. I wonder, will you do the same?
Love you, Lynn
Well I’m feeling we are at the close of our month-long classroom regarding conflict. And you may not feel as though it was worthy of your time but in the future, the truths of how to approach conflict with other believers will return to your mind and you will walk through it Biblically, work through forgiveness and seek restoration when possible.
What is really weird is that this month, personally, I’ve worked through conflict with believers, unbelievers, family and more. Guess Jesus wanted me to be ready for the conflict that is surely ahead in my life.
I want to leave you with a portion of an email I sent out the other day. I believe it holds Biblical wisdom for us all.
I want to point out that in the Bible, Peter and Paul experienced great conflict over circumcision and food laws, so much so, that this conflict was preserved in the Holy Word. The message for us today is that Peter was raised up to speak to the Jews and Paul the Gentiles. They would not see some matters of faith the same and that was okay. It was okay to disagree. If this can happen with the Apostles of Christ, we also will have disagreements that are similar in our day and age. AND IT IS OKAY!
Today I read in my Daily Bible:
Avoiding a fight is a mark of honor;
only fools insist on quarreling. —Proverbs 20:3
and all of God children said………. AMEN!
Okay, beginning next week let’s talk about Jesus. I’m so excited to share with you what Jesus is doing in our world. Who Jesus is to me and hear who He is to you in your current season. Also I can’t wait to discuss the details of all that He made available to us as followers as well as our mandates Christ has asked/commanded of us. Even typing the word, Jesus, my spirit stirs and I feel a swirl of joy in my center. I think we will poke about in the Gospels for a while.
Did you know Jesus said this?
And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover. —Mark 16:17-18
I’ve experienced each of these four components of this passage recently and I can’t wait to share the story with you.
What do you think? I bet Jesus has much to say about how we love one another, and especially how we love our spouse. I'm convinced that the best way to move ourselves away from conflict is through LOVE. And Jesus is love.
Let's do this thing!!!!!
Hey do any of you creative SUMites have a cool graphic of Jesus that I could use during this series? If so, email it to me with your permission to use it. NEAT!!!!
I love you my family on the web. We ARE THE CHURCH OF THE LIVING GOD. And we will impact our world for the cause of Christ Jesus. Hallelujah! SUMites Nation…. Pray on! Hugs, Lynn
Gang, the grandkids are visiting Nana’s today and we are either at the beach or the Wild Animal Park today. Hallelujah!!
So, today I’ll leave you with wise words from SUMite, Martha Bush:
I remember providing a woman a scripture several months ago that I try to abide by when it seems as though I might face conflict over scriptures or doctrines. I could see she was going one way, and me the other on whatever it was. So, I just said, okay, this is the scripture I use when I see I am going in opposite directions from someone--------Romans 14. (READ THIS PASSAGE. IT’S BELOW.)
Paul was talking about division in the church over eating meat. "Just be fully persuaded in your own mind what you believe, and leave it there, so as not to cause division among your brethren. I had rather, as I told her, be unified with you on what we do believe, not divided on what we don't." She agreed with me on that.
The Weak and the Strong
14 Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters. 2 One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. 3 The one who eats everything must not treat with contempt the one who does not, and the one who does not eat everything must not judge the one who does, for God has accepted them. 4 Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To their own master, servants stand or fall. And they will stand, for the Lord is able to make them stand.
5 One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike. Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind. 6 Whoever regards one day as special does so to the Lord. Whoever eats meat does so to the Lord, for they give thanks to God; and whoever abstains does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. 7 For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. 8 If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. 9 For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living.
10 You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister? Or why do you treat them with contempt? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. 11 It is written:
“‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord,
‘every knee will bow before me;
every tongue will acknowledge God.’”
12 So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.
13 Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister. 14 I am convinced, being fully persuaded in the Lord Jesus, that nothing is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for that person it is unclean. 15 If your brother or sister is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy someone for whom Christ died. 16 Therefore do not let what you know is good be spoken of as evil. 17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, 18 because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval.
19 Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. 20 Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All food is clean, but it is wrong for a person to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble. 21 It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother or sister to fall.
22 So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the one who does not condemn himself by what he approves. 23 But whoever has doubts is condemned if they eat, because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.
On Friday I visited a small group of SUMites in Orange, Texas through Facebook Live. Martha Bush invited me to share with the ladies who meet there to encourage one another. Because I'm in this learning season about the depths of scripture, I shared my thoughts on two powerful scriptures that have great impact in our lives.
1 Corinthians 7:14 & John 20:23. Take a listen and then ponder with the Lord the depth of meaning and possibility this could have upon your life. Let me know your thoughts in the comments. And ladies in Orange, thank you for allowing me to share!! I love all of you so much. Hugs, Lynn
Hey there SUM family, Tiffany here!
In the first post on this new writing journey for the SUM community I talked about the feeling of being a throw-away kid. This operated in my life in many ways. I was plagued by thoughts such as -
I am not good enough.
I am just trying to get your attention.
I cannot measure up to your standards.
What more do you want/expect from me?
I can't handle these demands.
I don't deserve it / you.
I honestly haven't realized – until last week during a healing prayer session with Lynn - that these thoughts that have plagued me for years are not only from the enemy but HAVE A NAME. The Orphan Spirit operates in such feelings as abandonment, loneliness, alienation, and rejection. Ouch! Looking back on my life, this has been the major theme! I am so used to a life like this that it almost seems unnatural to operate in freedom from this. (Isn't that truly the enemy's tactic..to turn things upside down and make it seem like “normal?”) The more I look into this topic, the freer I feel. It is almost as if the scales are falling from my eyes! I am not an expert by any means but I intend on digging deeper...I see this as a chapter in Vicarious to Victorious as the Lord leads me to write this book.
Or · phan: a child deprived by death of one or usually both parents; one deprived of some protection or advantage.
I have to say that this journey of freedom has been hard. I have realized that I have to truly fight for victory and the more I gain momentum, the more I have to be on guard. I don't say this to scare anyone. The journey is long but the triumph is so much stronger than anything I have to endure. I read Romans 8 this morning in my quiet time. This is a familiar passage to me and probably for many of you. What really jumped out to me was verse 18,
“I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.”
Wow, just wow. Today this familiar verse hit me like a ton of bricks. The sufferings that I am presently dealing with – the baggage and destructive mess left by the Orphan Spirit – has taken a toll on my life. My parenting. My marriage. My friendships. Everything!
I have been living with an identity crisis YEARS after trauma from father figures. The Orphan Spirit has left me deprived of protection and advantage. My identity for the longest time has been in productivity, performance, approval. These things have always been fleeting. Even if it seemed as though I was getting what I thought I wanted, said approval, I still couldn't accept it. If I could describe the labels that I allowed the Orphan Spirit to place on my life they would include such things as: worthless, unwanted, unworthy, unloved, ineffective, desperate, needy, clingy, an object not a person.
He has given me a new identity!
Let's look at Galatians 4:4-7:
But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship. Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.” So you are no longer a slave, but God's child; and since you are his child, God has made you also an heir.
This does not sound like the labels I had placed upon myself at all! Thank you God, You give us victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Cor. 15:57)!
In digging deeper into God's word, and allowing the Holy Spirit to renew my mind and transform me (Romans 12:1-2) I am seeing more and more that I have the ability to see my TRUE identity. My identity isn't really in crisis at all. In fact God is using the trauma of my past to help me look forward with more confidence than before. I am not who I once was. Instead of those old labels I can rest assured that my identity looks more like: victory, confidence, powerful, effective, fierce, redeemed, helpful, compassionate, empathetic, gracious, artistic and creative, unique, valuable.
Joseph Mattera wrote for Charisma News, “The only way to break this orphan spirit is for people to be filled with a sense of the Father's love for them in Christ, which then enables them to become mature sons who serve God out of knowledge of His undeserved grace instead of trying to earn the Father's love through performance.” (You can read through the entire article by clicking HERE)
I want to close this with a chance to meditate on the newer song from Passion feat. Kristian Stanfill and Melodie Malone – God You're So Good.
As you listen focus on these words:
I am blessed
I am called
I am healed
I am whole
I am saved in Jesus’ name
Filled with Your power
For the glory of Jesus’ name
And should this life
Lord, I will remember
has bought for me
Both now and forever
To be continued...
I'll see you in the comments dear ones!
In His Marvelous Grace,
My friends, in the prior posts of this series, I was directing our considerations to our children and how to assist them in dealing with their fright at night. However, this post is not only for the kids but also for us, grownups. Because if I asked our readership and they were brave enough to respond, half of you as adults also deal with frightening things in the night hours. So, this post is applicable to Mom and Dad and the children. In fact, let me start by sharing my personal experience.
There are four weapons of our warfare that can defeat the devils that work to frighten us. And today I will share two of those. However, before we get there, do you know WHY the enemy works hard to frighten us at night?
The simple answer is fear is the opposite of love. When you are in fear, you are in reality choosing to believe the enemy over the promises of God. I know this sounds harsh and it is difficult to reconcile in our lives that are clouded with uncertainty and fear abounds. But the reality is that God NEVER creates fear. He is pure love, kindness, goodness and all things holy and good.
When the enemy entices us to step into fear, we walk right into his camp and away from the truths of God. Now, please hear me, I understand that we must be cautious and that there are things in this world that are out of our control and cause us to have concern and can lead us to be fearful. But remaining in fear is the devils goal. In fear, we don’t hear God. We make poor decisions. Fear causes physical deteriorations and reactions. And fear locks us in a spiritual prison. The confusion joins in and terror arrives. Ick!
NO WONDER the enemy works in this medium.
BUT….. Hallelujah! Greater is He that is within me than he that is in the world. (1 John 4:4)
Jesus did not leave us as orphans! (John 14:18) As children of God, we possess major weapons to defeat the devils of fear and teach our children to do the same.
When my daughter, Caitie, was young and my son was in his teens, my husband traveled out of town for business. Every week, out on Monday back on Thursday evening. I was alone in my house for many, many nights as the kids grew up. And it wouldn’t take much in the middle of a dark night, a slight sound outside, something falls off the counter in the kitchen, or some other unexpected and sudden sound that would lurch me straight out of sleep into a panic, heart pounding, fear gripped sweat laying in bed. Covers poised to pull quickly over my head. Anyone????
Well, finally Jesus Himself, told me to memorize 1 Timothy 1:7
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
Well, when I was suddenly frightened in the night, I would sit up in bed and begin to say this verse OUT LOUD.
“God, did not give me a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and sound mind. Did you hear that devil? God did NOT give me a spirit of fear… NO, NO, NO… OH NO HE DIDN’T. You know what he gave me devil, a spirit of POWER… More powerful than you. He gave me a spirit of love and a mind that is sound and fixed on Him. Do you hear that devil? God gave me a powerful spirit. I will not be afraid. I command you out, spirit of fear. Get out of my room, out of my house away from me and my kids. I will not be afraid of you. I am filled with a sound mind, and I have a powerful spirit. I will rest in this truth. In Jesus name. AMEN”
Okay, my heart would slow. Something changed in the atmosphere and I went back to blissful sleep. It was over a season that I would sit up and repeat this verse over and over, even with my unbelieving husband in bed next to me. But, look I was DONE with fear. He had to go! and I didn’t care if my husband woke up and heard me barking at the devil. *grin*
SCRIPTURE is a powerful defeat to fear and many other weapons of the demonic world. The WORD of God bends time and space, creates galaxies, knits a child in his mother’s womb. His WORD releases angelic forces and smashed the demonic plots against our life. We MUST have the WORD abiding within.
Read it! It is your life-line to so many challenges of life. Give passages to your kids to have them say when they wake up at night. 2 Tim 1:7 is a good place to start.
Secondly, worship. It kills devils. In fact, I think next week I will continue this series because I want to describe specifically what happens to satan and his minions when we worship.
SUMites, please help others out. How has Jesus helped you to defeat fear? Share what you learned in the comments. I would love to share some of your lessons on Facebook. Hugs, Lynn
My friends, did you experience a breakthrough through our study together? What do you feel God did in you through the revelations of His love and promises for you? Please share your heart, your doodles and your coloring pages.
And thank you again for joining me as we walked through the truths of Romans 8 through Scriptures and coloring. I pray you are continually embraced in and transformed by God's great love for you!
Love you so much!
“Jesus has the authority to condemn, but He chose another way—the way of sacrificial love. For He knew to condemn would drive us away and His desire was to be the solution to draw us near.” pg. 50 #youarelovedcoloringbiblestudy goo.gl/qG9HBT
Remember to share what you're learning in the comments. Did you identify a struggle? What is God's promise and provision for that? For you? Share your heart, your doodles and your coloring pages! Hugs! ~Dineen
“His loves reaches us from the past of the cross, carries us through the present, and ushers us into eternity. It’s constant and relentless—for us and for those we love and pray for.” pg. 46 #youarelovedcoloringbiblestudy goo.gl/qG9HBT
You Are Loved Coloring Book Study Schedule
Aug 28: (Share pages!)
Video: How Much Does God Love Us?
Hello my friends! Here's our second bonus coloring page, Paisley Proverb. Just had to finish with paisley, of course!
If you can't download it, email me and I will send it to you directly.
Enjoy the coloring, my friends! Hope you're having a blast with the study. Hard to believe we're almost at the end!
You Are Loved Coloring Book Study Schedule
Aug 25: (Share pages!)
Video: Is God Good?
Decorate, Delight & Discover!: How Much Does God Love Us? (pages 49-53)
Aug 28: (Share pages!)
Video: How Much Does God Love Us?
Remember to share what you're learning in the comments. What is your believing statement? Share your heart, your doodles and your coloring pages! Hugs! ~Dineen
“God’s Word will transform you. Reed it, believe it, and trust Him to do it—because He watches over His Word to fulfill it (Jer. 1:12).” pg. 37 #youarelovedcoloringbiblestudy goo.gl/qG9HBT
You Are Loved Coloring Book Study Schedule
Aug 23: Bonus Coloring Page Download
Aug 25: (Share pages!)
Video: Is God Good?
Decorate, Delight & Discover!: How Much Does God Love Us? (pages 49-53)
Aug 28: (Share pages!)
Video: How Much Does God Love Us?
“I find this very freeing indeed to know I don’t have to “fix” myself. Jesus did it with His death and each day the Holy Spirit is helping me to be more and more Christlike.” pg. 16 #youarelovedcoloringbiblestudy goo.gl/qG9HBT
Dear friends, I'd love it if you'd post a quick review on Amazon. We so appreciate that. Every sale benefits this ministry and pays our bills. And reviews help us tremendously. Thank you! Love you! ~Dineen
Tweet this!: “So my philosophy has shifted from seeking an easier life to seeking God for a more fulfilling life.” pg. 9 #youarelovedcoloringbiblestudy
My friends, I had a message planned for today, but as I prayed, asking the Holy Spirit what was on His heart for us, He inspired me to make this a day of celebration. He pointed out the encouragement received through my testimony on Monday and led me to have you do the very same thing.
So I declare this to be a day to share whatever you see God doing in your life and those you love and pray for. Even if it's the smallest of things (maybe only to you...), share it. It could very well be the catalyst to greater hope and faith for someone reading here today. You just never know what God will use through us to help someone else. He LOVES to do that. He LOVES to partner with us in helping others. He LOVES to work all things out for a GOOD and GREAT REPORT!
And as Revelations 12:10-11 tells us, this is how we truly defeat the enemy, by speaking out those great reports—large and small—which are declaring we are overcomers, more than conquerers, and the power-of-God-filled, children of God! The enemy is already defeated, and continues to be every time you confess who you are.
SUMites, share in the comments and let's celebrate each other and praise God for what He is doing in our lives. If you're not sure what to share, read the comments and watch how the Holy Spirit will inspire and show you what He's doing for and in you. I have a feeling many of you will be delightfully surprised!
Holy Spirit, give each of us fresh eyes and perspective to see the things of God operating and working in our lives and those we love, that are the evidence of Christ Jesus and the Goodness of God at work. In the mighty name of Jesus, and by His shed blood, we declare today that we ARE more than conquerers and the world shall know it by the word of our testimony. AMEN!!!
Love you, dear friends! Rejoicing with you!
My friends, a few weeks back several of you left comments about wanting to know how I study the Bible and dig out the truths and revelations. I want to share that with you today so you can start digging deeper and seeking to know God more intimately too!
First and foremost, understand that this is how the Holy Spirit and I operate together. He leads, I follow, and He reveals truth. First, let’s start with the tools I use:
- A journaling Bible (ESV translation)
- A journal and pen
- An iPad
- The Olive Tree Bible App
In this Bible app, I have multiple translations (11 to be exact) of the Bible, several of which include the Strong’s Numbers that give you the Greek and Hebrew words and definitions. I also have three commentaries, study notes for two translations, and a cross reference.
For example, here is a screen shot of my Bible app as I looked up the Greek word for ‘rooms’ in John 14:2, using the ESV Bible with Strong’s. By simply touching the word I want to know more about, a second window appears with the definitions and cross references for that word.
This is where my interaction with the Holy Spirit is key. As I study the words, He makes the connections to the meanings and brings additional revelation and understanding to the meaning and intention of the words being used.
When we dig a little deeper like this, we discover that there are multiple Greek words that are translated into one single word in the English language. The words love and healing are good examples of this. We have one word for love, but the Greek has four. This is when the intention of the word can open up the full meaning of the Scriptures. And this is where I have a lot of fun as the Holy Spirit brings the Word to life and knocks my socks off with fuller revelations and understanding of the truths in the Bible.
Also, understanding additional definitions to the word brings the fuller meaning and intention of the Words to life as well. An amplified translation is very good at doing this as well.
What gets really fascinating is when you start to recognize words from other areas of the Bible. This is why I journal the meanings in my journal Bible (see the picture above) and can flip quickly back to them and compare. I could make notes right in the Bible app, but I’m a visual person and can remember visually easier where I’ve written certain notes. That works much better for me.
So, my friends, I hope this helps you figure out ways to study the Bible more deeply that work for you. Ask the Holy Spirit for His inspiration and leading to show you how He wants to do this with you. He’s quite brilliant at it and loves doing it with us! That’s His job after all, to reveal Who Jesus is and His truth to us.
And now, my dear friends, I will pray the prayer over you that I have prayed over myself for years, each day as I sit down to study my Bible.
Holy Spirit, give every person reading this the wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Jesus Christ, to know Him better through His Word. I ask that eyes of their hearts be enlightened, that they would know more deeply the hope You have called them to and the understanding that as saints, we are the inheritance of our Lord Jesus Christ. In the name of Jesus, amen! (Eph 1:17-18)
Now I pass on one finally piece of wisdom in your pursuit of God’s truths in His Word. Have fun studying your Bible. God once told me, “Don’t make Me a duty.” He wants us to seek Him joyfully and know the fullness of His delight in us. Remember, as you seek to understand the Bible better, you are actually growing closer to the Lord!
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. — John 1:14
I love you, my friends!